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THE / / 

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 

MAGAZINE,, 

AN ILLUSTRATED MONTHLY > 



honorary Editor: JOHN HYDE 

HONORARY ASSOCIATE EDITORS 

A. W. GREELY W J McGEE ELIZA RUHAMAH SCIDMORE 


VOL. VII -YEAR 189G 


WASHINGTON 

THE NATIONAL GEOGRARIIIC SOCTETY" 
IS!)<; 



NOV 5 1981 

vJ:(Bf?ARIES 


WASHINGTON, D. C. 

JUDD & DETWEILER, PRINTERS 
1896 


CONTENTS 


Page 

Introductory; [John Hyde].., 1 

Russia in Europe; by Gardiner G. Hubbard 3 

Tlie Arctic Cruise of the U. S. Revenue Cutter Benr ; by Sheldon 

Jackson 27 

The Scope and Value of Arctic Explorations; by A. W. Greely. ... 32 

Obituary (Robert Brown, Admiral Pearse, Henry Seebohm, Rear 

Admiral Shufeldt) 40 

Geographic Literature (Elementary Physical Geography, Tarr ; The 
Gold Diggings of Cape Horn, Spears; South Africa, Keane; 
National Geographic Monographs, Powell, Shaler, Russell, Wil- 
lis, Diller, Davis, Gilbert, and Hayes ; Tibet, Rockhill ; Chili, 


Bianconi ; Highways of Commerce, Consular Office) 40 

Executive Reports (War, Navy, Post Office, and Interior Depart- 
ments; Interstate Commerce Commission) 43 

New Maps 45 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society .' 46 

North American Notes 48 

Venezuela: Her Government, People, and Boundary; by William 

E. Curtis 49 

The Panama Canal Route ; by Robert T. Hill 59 

The Tehuantepec Ship Railway ; by Elmer L. Corthell 64 

The Present State of the Nicaragua Canal; by A. W. Greely 73 

Explorations by the Bureau of American Ethnology in 1895 ; b}^ 

W J McGee 77 

Geographic Literature (The Yellowstone National Park, Chittenden ; 

Sixteenth Annual Report of the IT. S. Geological Surve 3 ’', etc. . . 80 

Y ucatan in 1895 83 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society 86 

Geographic Notes. 87 

The Valley of the Orinoco ; by T. H. Gignilliat. 92 

Tlie So-called “Jeannette Belies” ; by William H. Dall 93 

Nansen’s Polar Expedition ; by A. W. Greely 98 

The Submarine Cables of the World ; by Gustave Herrle. ....... 102 

Peter Cooper and Submarine Telegraphy ; [A. W. Grelly] 108 

The Russo-Ymerican Telegraph Project of 1864-’67; by W. H. Dall. 110 
Survey and Subdivision of Indian Territory ; by Henry Gannett. . . 1J2 

“ Free Burghs ” in the United States ; by Jamls H. Blodgeit 116 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society 122 

Miscellanea 124 

Seriland ; by W J McGnu and Willard D. Johnson 125 

The Olympic Country ; by S. C. Gilman 133 

The Discovery of Glacier Bay, Alaska ; bv Eliza R. Scidmore. ... 140 
Hydrography in the United States ; by Frederick H. Newell 146 

iii 


IV 


CONTICNTS 


Page 

RcccMit Trian^ulation in the Cascades ; by S. S. Gaxnktt loO 

The Altitude of Mount Adams, Washinfjton ; by Edgar McCi.ure. . 151 
Geographic Literature (Archeological Studies atnong the Ancient 
Cities of Alexico, Holmes; Geological History of the Chautauqua 

Graj)e Belt, Tarr ; Die Liparischen Inseln, Hawranek) 153 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society 155 

Aliscellanea 156 

Africa since ISSS, with Special Reference to South Africa and Abys- 
sinia; by Gardiner G. Hubbard 157 

Fundamental Geographic Relation of the Three Americas; by Rob- 
ert T. Hiui 175 

Tbe Kansas River; b\’ Arthur P. Davis 181 

Geographic Literature (Le(;ons de Geographie Physiipie, de Lappar- 
ent ; Annual Report of the Superintendent of the U. S. Coast and 

Geodetic Survey) 184 

Miscellanea 188 

The Seine, the Aleuse, and the Aloselle; by William M. Davis [IJ. . 189 
Across the Gulf by Rail to Key AVest ; by Jefferson B. Browne. . . . 203 
A Geographical Description of the British Islands; by AV. AI. Davis.. 208 

The Alexican Census; [A. AV. Greely] 211 

Geographic Literature (Handbook of Arctic Di.scoveries, Greely; 
Crater Lake Special Alap, Diller ; Rand, AIcNally and Company’s 
Alaps; Occupations of the Negroes, Gannett; Foreign Commerce 

and Navigation; Statistical Abstract of tbe United States) 212 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society ’. 214 

Geograidiic Notes .... 217 

Aliscellanea, 220 

The AA'ork of the U. S. Board on Geographic Names; by Henry Gan- 
nett 221 

The .Seine, the Aleuse, and the Aloselle ; by AVilliam AL Davis [II] . . 228 

A Journey in Ecuador; by AIark B. Kerr 238 

The Aberration of Sound as Ilhistrateil by the Berkeley Powder Ex- 
plosion ; by Robert H. Chapman 246 

Alineral Production in the United States 250 

Geographic Notes 251 

Aliscellanea 252 

The AVork of the National Geographic Society; [W J AIoGee] 253 

Eighth Annual Field Aleeting of the National Geographic Society; 

[W J AIcGee] 259 

Geographic History of the Piedmont Plateau; by W J AIcGee 261 

Sjkottswood’s Flxpedition in 1716; by William AI. Thornton 265 

Jefferson as a Geographer; b}’ A. AA’. Greely 269 

Albemarle in Revolutionary Days; bj' G. Brown Goode 271 

Geograpliic Notes 281 

Al iscellanea 283 

The Recent Flarthquake AAhive on the Coast of Japan; by Eliza R. 

Sctdmore 285 

The Return of Dr Nansen 290 

Descriptive Topographic Terms of Spanish America; by R. T. Hill. 291 


CONTENTS 


V 


Page 

The "Weather Bureau Eiver and Flood System ; by Willis L. Moori:. 302 

Cliarles Francis Hall and Jones Sound ; [A. W. Greely] 3CaS 

^lineral Production in the United States 310 

Reports of Sealing Schooners from Tuscarora Deep ; by Eliza R. Scid- 

MORE 310 

Geographic Notes 312 

The American Association at Buffalo ; [W J AIcGee] •. 315 

Death of G. Brown Goode; [W J McGee] 316 

California; by George C. Perkins 317 

The Economic Aspects of Soil Erosion ; by N. S. Siialer [I] 328 

The Nansen Polar Expedition; by Ernest A. Man 339 

Ice-cliffs on the Kowak River; by J. C. Cantwell 345 

Recent Hydrographic Work ; [F. H. Newell] 347 

Miscellanea 348 

The Witwatersrand and the Revolt of the Uitlanders ; by George F. 

Becker ... 349 

The Economic AsjDects of Soil Erosion; by N. S. Shaler [II] 368 

A Critical Period in South African History; [John Hyde] 377 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society 379 

Geographic Notes 380 

Report of the Sixth International Geographical Congress. 380 

The Geography of the Southern Peninsula of the United States; by 

John N. MacGonigle 381 

Tlie Sage Plains of Oregon ; by Frederick V. Covii.le 395 

The U. S. Department of Agriculture and its Biological Survey ; [John 

Ha’de] 405 

Statistics of Railways in the United States ; [Henry' Gannett] 406 

Geographic Work in Peru ; [W J McGee] 407 

Geographic Literature (The Scenery of Switzerland and the Causes 
to which it is due, Lubbock ; Frye’s Home and School Atlas; 

Lakes of North America, Russell) 408 

Proceedings of the National Geographic Society 410 

Geographic Notes 411 

Miscellanea 412 


ILLUSTRATIONS 

Page 

Pl.vte 1 — Map of Russia in Europe 1 

2 — United States revenue-marine steamer Bear, moored to a 

field of ice in B(*ringsea 27 

3 — Herd of reindeer lying down 28 

4— Scene at Point Barrow in April 30 

5 — Map of the Orinoco valley 49 

6 — La Giiayra, from the east 52 

7 — Valley of Caracas, east of the capitid, with coffee and sugar 

j)Iantations .54 


vi ILL I’STRA TIONS 

Page 

Platk 8 — Valley of Caracap, west of the capital, with plantations and 

sugar factory 56 

5) — Construction work on the Panama canal in 1895 62 

10— Chart showing the submarine cables, principal land lines, 

coaling stations, etc., of the world 9.3 

11 — Portrait of Dr F’ridtjof Nansen 98 

12 — Portrait of William H. Dali 110 

13 — Indian Territory — camp of a .surveying party of the United 

Suites Geological Survey, 1895 114 

14— Map of Seriland, Sonora, iMe.vico 125 

15 — VieM' of Seriland from camp on Tiburon island 128 

16 — Map of the Olymiiic country, Washington .'. 133 

17 — Front of ^luir glacier from the west moraine. Mount Case 

in the background. 142 

18 — Portrait of Gardiner G. Hubbard 157 

19 — .Sketch map of Africa 16)4 

20— Portrait of General A. W. Greely, United States Army. . . 189 

21 — Map of the valley of the Seine near Duclair 191 

22 — Ma]) of the valley of the Moselle near Berncastel 193 

23— Map of the valley of the Meuse near St ^lihiel 194 

24 — Maj) of the valley of the Meuse near Dun-.suf-Meuse 195 

25 — Handiwork of the Cayapas Indians, Ecuador 221 

26— Map of the lower valley of the Bar 236 

27— Residence of the Gohernador of the Cayapas Indians, on 

the Rio Cayapas, Ecuador 241 

28 — Portrait of Henry Gannett 253 

29 — Monticello, Virginia, meeting of the National Geographic 

Society, May 16, 1896 2.59 

.30— Effects of the earthquake wave at Kamaishi, .lapan, .Tune 

1.5, 1896 285 

31 — Sketch map of .lapan 285 

32— Scenes on the coast at Kamaishi, .lapan, June 15, 1896. . . . 286 

33 — Scene on thecoa.stof the island of Hondo, .lapan, after the 

earthquake wave of June 15, 1.896 288 

34 — IMap of the Arctic regions, showing routes traversed by the 

Nan.sen e.vpedition of 189.3-1896 317 

35— Market square, Johannesburg, .South Africa .349 

.36 — Zulu bride and bridegroom 356 

37 — Crossing the Umbelosi river, Swazieland 360 

38 — Flying the Transvaal flag on the offices of the reform com- 
mittee, Johanne.sburg, December 31, 1895 364 

.39 — Phosphate mining on the west coast of Florida .381 

40 — On the St. Johns river .384 

Falls of the Miami river 384 

41— On the Caloo.sahatchee river .388 


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THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

Yol. VII JANUARY, 1896 No. 1 


INTRODUCTORY 

With the present number the National Geographic Magazine 
commences a new series and makes its first appearance as a 
monthly publication. What shall be its precise scope and func- 
tion has been the most difficult question its editors have been 
called upon to^ete^Tnine. From no other point of view is the in- 
terdependence of the sciences so manifest as from the geographic. 
Geography in its broader sense has to do not merely with the 
physical featured of the earth’s surface, but with the distribution 
of animal and vegetable life, with political divisions and subdi- 
visions, with the growth and movement of population, with the 
progress of human society, with the development of the earth’s 
natural resources, and with commercial intercourse between na- 
tions. To cover successfully so vast and so diversified a field is 
entirely beyond the capacity of any single periodical publication. 
Either it must restrict itself to physical geography and become 
largely technical, or it must content itself with briefly chronicling 
the more notable additions to geographic knowledge in those 
parts of the world in which its readers are less directly interested, 
and with becoming more especially tlie exponent of the geogra- 
ph}^ — physical, political, and commercial — of the continent with 
which its pul)lication more particularly identifies it. And surely 
in the case of an American publication tins is a sufficient!}'' broad 
field. There are vast regions of the New World that must con- 
tinue to tempt the venturesome explorer for many years to come. 
Here, too, on this continent “ the rudiments of empire are,” in the 
words of one of our own poets, “ plastic yet and warm })olitical 
Ijrohlems are being wrought out on an unexami)led scale, a fusion 
of races hitherto without i)arallel is going on, and the bounty of 
nature is being {)Oured out with a more lavish hand than in any 
other equally e.xtensive [)ortion of the globe. It will accordingly 


2 


IXTRODUCTOR Y 


be the aim of the National Geographic Magazine to he American 
rather than cosmopolitan, and in an especial degree to be National. 
There is hardly a United States citizen whose name has become 
identified with Arctic exploration, with the Bering sea contro- 
versy, or with the Alaska boundary dispute who is not an active 
member of the National Geographic Society and a contributor to 
the pages of its magazine. In the Army and Navy the Society 
is also well represented, and from the gallant and accomplished 
ofificers of those important branches of the service it receives from 
time to time much valuable information. The principal officers 
and experts of the different scientific bureaus of the Govern- 
ment — the Geological Survey, the Coast and Geodetic Survey, 
the Smithsonian Institution, the National Museum, the Hydro- 
graphic Office, the Naval Observatory, the "Weather Bureau, the 
Bureau of American Ethnology, the Biological Division of the 
Department of Agriculture, and others — have always been among 
the most active members of the Society, and^the great work that 
is being done by these several bureaus — a work that is at once 
the wonder and admiration of foreign scientii^ts — will be regu- 
larly discussed in the pages of the magazine by those who are in 
close touch with if not actually engaged in it. Turning from 
our own country to the sister republics of the two Americas, we 
find almost all of them connected with the Society in the persons' 
of their diplomatic representatives, and through the cordial coop- 
eration of these gentlemen the magazine will receive from time 
to time the latest and most authentic geographic intelligence con- 
cerning countries in which the people of the United States are 
now taking an exceedingly keen and friendly interest. That the 
magazine will not reach at a single liound the high standard at 
which those responsible for its management are aiming will 
scarcely be a disappointment either to its editors or its readers. 
The measure of its success, however, will not wholly depend 
upon the efforts of those conducting it. Nothing less than the 
generous support of that numerous class of the community which 
is interested in one or another of the different branches of geo- 
graphic science will enable the National Geograidiic Society to 
make its magazine everything that it ought to lie and pro}ierly 
equip it for the discharge of its function as The ^Magazine of 
American Geography. To possess a knowledge of the condi- 
tions and possibilities of one’s own country is surely no small 
part of an enlightened patriotism, and to the })atriotic imi)ulses 
of the American people no appeal was ever made in vain. 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


3 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE* 

By Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, LL. D., President of the National 
Geographic Society 

England, the United States, and Russia have each made 
greater territorial acquisitions during the present century than 
all the other countries of the world together. In the case of the 
British empire, these have been larger and more important than 
those of either the United States or Russia. The United States 
and Russia have only annexed contiguous territory, save Alaska. 
Russia when first enrolled among civilized nations, in the time 
of Peter the Great, had no outlet to any ocean except the Arctic, 
and consequently no possibility of a navy or of commerce. 
Since then she has extended her dominion northwest to the 
gulf of Bothnia and the Baltic sea, building St. Petersburg on 
the marshes of Finland, south to the Black and Caspian seas, 
southeast to Afghanistan and China, and in the extreme east to 
the river Amur and the Pacific. 

The acquisitions of the Russian Empire within this centuiy 
are greater in extent and importance than the whole of European 
Russia before that time. Her frontier has been advanced 
toward Stockholm 630 miles, toward Berlin 700 miles, toward 
Constantinople 500 miles, toward India 1,300 miles. Her terri- 
tory in Europe comprises more than one-half of that continent; 
yet with all her great empire she has only three ports, and 
these on the Black sea, open to navigation throughout the year, 
the others being closed by ice from three to six months, while 
from those on the Black sea ships of war have no right to 
pas.s into the Mediterranean. Until within one hundred years 
southern and southeastern Russia were infested with hordes of 
Tartars and Kalmucks, who overran nearly one-third of Russia — 
wandering tribes without fixed habitation or permanent govern- 
ment, “ marauders, slave-dealers, and vagabonds,’’ who “ came, 
compiered, burned, ])illaged, murdered, and went.’’ The first 
step of Russia when she determined that her em])ire should 
l)elong to the civilization of Europe was the subjugation of these 
tribes. This has been accomplislied by compelling the Tartars 

*Ammal :ul(lre.ss delivercil May 10, 1805. 


4 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


and Kalmucks to live within fixed and permanent boundaries, 
by enrolling tlie Cossacks into bands of cavalry, and substituting 
the agricultural for the nomadic life. Many of the tribes, unwil- 
ling to give up their wandering life, retired beyond the Caspian 
sea, and from those regions continued their inroads upon the 
Russian settlements. Russia, for her own protection, was again 
obliged to subdue these unruly tribes, and thereby to extend 
her dominion still farther to the east, until it finally reached a 
barrier in the Pamir and tlie mountains of Afghanistan. 

PHYSICAL FEATURES OF RUSSIA. 

If nature ever made the boundaries of a nation, it determined 
those of Russia — the Arctic ocean on the north, the Ural 
mountains on the east, the Black and Caspian seas on the 
south, and the Baltic sea on the northwest, with Siberia and 
Trans-Caspia as the natural extension of her empire. 

In August, 1881, I left London on a trip to Russia, passing 
through Antwerp, Berlin, and Konigsberg to St. Petersburg; 
thence to Moscow and Nijni Novgorod. From Moscow I went 
southeast through Russia, over the Caucasus to Tiflis, in Asia; 
thence to Batoum and Sebastopol, on the Black sea, and from 
the Crimea north to ^Moscow. In all this journey of 3,500 miles 
we crossed no range of mountains, we saw no hills more than 
five or six hundred feet in height until we reached the Cau- 
casus. It was one broad, level plain from Antwerp to Konigs- 
berg, 150 miles in width, bounded on the north by the Baltic, 
on the south by the Erzberg and the foothills of the Carpathian 
mountains. Entering Russia, the plain widens, extending north- 
east 1,800 miles along the coast of the Arctic ocean to the Ural 
mountains, south to the Black sea and the foothills of the Cau- 
casus, and southeast 3,000 miles to the mountains of Afghan- 
istan. My letters written from the foothills of the Caucasus say : 
“ Onl}’’ think of traveling from one end of Europe to the other 
over a plain, neither hill nor mountain in all the route, with 
scarcely a new scene from morning to night or from one day 
to another. After two days’ and nights’ traveling nearl}’- due 
south from St. Petersburg we have not reached as far south as 
St. Johns, in Newfoundland.” 

“Yesterday our route was over great plains with rich black 
earth, occasional forests, i)retty well watered; today, broad level 
stej^pes with sandy soil, without a tree in sight. We are trav- 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


5 


eling through the land of the Cossacks; men and -women at 
every station have Asiatic faces, and wear generally a goatskin 
coat, with the fur inside, fastened by a girdle. No trace of cul- 
tivation, except on the streams which we cross from time to 
time. These streams flow in low, narrow valleys; the road 
descends two or three hundred feet into the valleys by curves, 
and then ascends to the plain to save grading, and this affords 
the only variation in tlie scenery.” 

In this great plain there are five distinct zones of land : The 
frozen, the forest, the black, the agricultural, and the barren 
steppes. The black zone, near the center, is the most fertile and 
thickly inhabited. To the north the country grows gradually 
less fertile, passing through the forest zone to the Arctic zone, 
entirel}’- destitute of vegetation. To the south of the black zone 
the country likewise grows less and less fertile, passing through 
the agricultural zone to the dry and sandy steppes, entirely des- 
titute of vegetation. 

From 200 to 300 miles in width, the black zone extends from 
Austria, a little north of east, across Russia, over the Ural 
mountains, far into Siberia. It resembles our ])rairies ; has a 
rich, l)lack soil of great depth, unsurpassed in fertility. Reclus 
sa,ys that “ all traces of glaciers disappear where the black lands 
begin and the forests end, while the contrast between the flora 
of the two regions is complete.” American geologists believe 
that the glaciers extended over the whole of Russia to the Black 
sea, and that the great level plain which constitutes Russia is 
due to aqueo-glacial action. 

In the northern part of the black zone are occasional groves of 
oak and birch ; traveling north these are succeeded by forests 
of hardwood, with occasional evergreens. Gradually the hard- 
wood disappears ; then we enter the forest zone, j)ines and 
evergreens. About one-third of Russia is forest. In this region 
are immense districts, where the onlv roads are rivers flowinsr 
througli interminable walls. Then comes a land of rocks, lakes, 
and swam])s,with isolated and snowy masses rising above the 
forests and peat-l)eds. This is the Arctic zone, and here is 
Finland, a region of lakes, over eleven hundred in one province ; 
the great forests of pine become small evergreens, reaching a 
height of 25 feet in 100 years, gaining their maturity in 300 years. 
Gradually they become yet smaller and are of slower growth. 
The giant of these forests is the willow, which sometimes reaches 


6 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


a height of 6 inches. A little farther north the rainfall exceeds 
the evaporation and river-flow and forms a woodless plain of 
small lakes and morasses, called tundra, on which neither man 
nor beast could set foot if the ground were not frozen to the 
depth of very many feet; in summer melting a little more than 
one foot. Into this treeless region in summer come innumer- 
able birds of different kinds to build their nests and hatch their 
young. In autumn they fly south — some to the Crimea, some 
to Asia, others into Africa. So level is the countr}'^ that in their 
flight they rarely reach a lieight of 500 feet above sea-level. 
This is the land of the Samoyeds, where agriculture is impossi- 
ble, and the natives live by Ashing and hunting. Still farther 
north, yet in Russia, is Nova Zembla, 75° north latitude, where 
no animal life exists ; but even here, in this land of ice and 
snow, several hundred species of lichen have l)een found. 
Though the surface of the water is frozen for about nine months 
in the year, }’^et fish and animalculse abound, the temperature of 
the fish varying with the water in which they live, here only a 
little above the freezing-point. 

Returning to the black zone, near the latitude of Mo.scow, and 
traveling south, first the hardwood gives place to the rich prairie 
land; then we reach the agricultural steppe, a treeless land, 
susceptible of cultivation, though lacking in the ricli, deep loam 
of the black zone. Farther south lie the vast barren steppes, 
in the west a sandy desert, in the east a vast saline plain, for- 
merly the bed of a great lake, of which the Caspian and Aral 
seas formed a small part. This is the genuine steppe, a country 
level as the sea, without even a gentle undulation or a particle 
of cultivation — neither tree nor bush, nor even a stone, to diversify 
the monotonous expanse. The inhabitants lead a nomadic life, 
like those of the Arctic region. 

The very diversity of the country and the occupations of the 
people of Russia tend to unity, for the north needs the grain of 
the south, and the south requires the wood of the north. Middle 
Russia, that great center of manufactures, without the north and 
south would lack markets for its manufactures. 

MOUNTAINS. 

The greatest extent of upland in Russia is near Great Nov- 
gorod, southwest of St. Petersburg, where the Valdai hills rise 
from 800 to 1,000 feet. 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


III the east the Ural mountains separate Russia from Siberia, 
a range of plateaus rather than mountains, attaining an eleva- 
tion of from 3,000 to 5,000 feet, extending from the Arctic ocean 
south about 1,200 miles. They are rich in metals — gold, precious 
stones, iron, and coal — with large and productive mines. In 
the southeastern part of Russia are the Caucasian mountains, 
separating Europe from Asia and running from the Black to the 
Caspian seas, about 600 miles in length and 150 in width. The 
culminating point is mount Elburz, 18,572 feet above the sea 
level, 3,000 feet higher than Mont Blanc. Near the center of 
the Caucasus is mount Kazbek, 16,552 feet, 1,000 feet higher 
than Monte Rosa. These mountains are clothed with snow for 
several thousand feet, and down their sides flow many glaciers. 
The Russians have so little love of sceneiy -that they rarely make 
excursions among these mountains or ascend Elburz, which, 
though half a mile higher than Mont Blanc, is much easier of 
ascent, because there is only a steady climb for several hours 
over smooth, frozen snow. 

Near Kazbek is the pass of Dariel, 8,000 feet in height, the only 
carriage road through these mountains. In ancient times this 
pass, called the “ gates of the Caucasus,” was guarded by Tartar 
towers, which still stand, thousands of years old, overlooking the 
pass. Until Russia conquered the northern part of Persia, the 
two sides were never held by the same power. 

At the southeastern extremity of the Caucasus, on the Caspian 
sea, at Baku, there stands an old temple, where for centuries a 
beacon was kept burning by the fire-worshipers of India and 
Persia. The people in the olden time believed that the fire was 
supernatural — the gift of the god of fire. Modern science shoAvs 
that it came from oil wells, and modern enterprise has here de- 
veloped a great industry. The old temple of the fire-worshipers 
remains; on one side of it are huge derricks, ijumping tlie oil ; 
on the other, a great stone embankment, stretching over a mile 
along the coast, where steam and sailing vessels and long trains 
of railroad cars load Avith oil. Here is a population of fifty 
thousand, Avhere tAventy years ago Avere less than fifteen hun- 
dred. The Parsee tending the fire symbolizes the past; the 
Russian Avith his oil Avells, his railroads, and steamboats, the 
future. The petroleum is used for fuel on the Caspian and Volga 
steamers. It is sent up the Volga and its branches to all jiarts 
of Russia and is carrietl by rail from Baku to Batoum, on the 


8 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


]^lack sea, and thence )jy steamer to different parts of Europe. 
It has superseded American oil in Russia and competed with 
it in Vienna and Berlin until consolidation of the American and 
Russian interests was made. In 1893 Baku alone produced 
33,104,000 gallons, a production largeh^ exceeding that of either 
of the two great oil-fields of America. 

Another range of mountains, or rather a continuation of tlie 
Caucasus, runs across the Crimea. This range protects the 
coast on the southeastern side from the cold winds of the north, 
and here are Livadia and Yalta, where the late Czar died — the 
only places in all Russia Avhere there is an equable climate like 
that of Nice and Mentone. The road from Livadia crosses this 
chain of mountains through a pass about 3,000 feet in height, 
with views of the Black sea resembling those of the Mediterra- 
nean near Amalfi, and then descends to Balaklava and Sebas- 
to])ol, where the winter winds from the Arctic blow unljroken 
by any mountains. 

EIVER SYSTEM. 

In the plateau of the Valdai the principal rivers of Russia 
rise. The Volga and its branches flow east and south to the 
Caspian sea ; the Dnieper and Don to the Black sea ; others 
northwest to the Baltic. Russia is so level that its rivers are 
slow and sluggish, with little water except during the melting 
of snows. They are connected Avith each other and Avith the 
gulf of Finland and the Arctic ocean by canals, so that inter- 
communication betAveen different parts of the country is easy 
in the summer. The rivers that emj)ty into the Arctic ocean 
and into the Black and Caspian seas have several mouths, so 
that navigation from the river into the sea is A’ery difficult. 

There are 33,000 miles of naA’igable rivers, 81,000 vessels of 
various kinds, and 138,000 rafts. 

CLIM.A.TE. 

In its climate, as in extent, conformation, and population, 
Russia differs from the other countries of Europe. These are 
bathed by the Avarm Avinds from the Atlantic and ^Mediterranean. 
The moisture of these Avinds is rapidly condensed as they pass 
over the Alps and Carpathians and the mountains of Noiavay 
and SAveden, the source of numerous rivers, and affording an 
abundant supply of rain to Avestern Europe. These Avinds then 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


9 


blow over Russia, but they have become cUy, without moisture ; 
consequently the rainfall of western Russia is only about twenty 
or twenty-five inches, or half that of western Europe. This 
steadily diminishes toward the east, leaving the steppes of east- 
ern Russia dry and barren, unless irrigated. The tem])erature 
diminishes rapidly from the west to the east. North of 50°, 
or far south of Moscow, it diminishes more rapidly from the 
west to the east than from the south to the north. 

Over the vast plain of Russia the winds blow without obstruc- 
tion. The cold winter winds bring from the Arctic ocean the 
temperature of the polar regions, while the warm summer winds 
from the Black sea convey the temperature of the torrid zone. 
Spring and autumn are almost unknown, for as soon as the frost 
is gone, about the middle of April or the first of May, the wheat 
and grain fields and the foliage of the trees burst forth with a 
rapidit}' unknown in our country. 

RACES. 

Although Russia is one of the most uniform and level of 
countries, yet few are occupied by as great a variety of races. 
Southern and middle Russia were for centuries the great high- 
ways over which vast numbers of barbaric hordes — Scythians, 
Huns, Mongols, and Vandals — passed from Asia through Russia 
into Italy, Hungaiy, Poland, Germany, and by the Dari el pass 
over the Caucasus into Asia Minor. Some of each of these 
tribes remained ; all left their impress U{)on Russia. While 
these tribes were overrunning Russia the Slavonians came, to- 
day the ]>redominant race, the last of the Aryans to leave their 
original home, ai\il these retained when they entered Russia 
many Asiatic habits. In the fifth and sixth centuries they prol)- 
ably occu[)ied the region now known as “ Little Russia” and were 
the germ of the great Russian empire. ^Vhen the Slavonians 
entered Russia they found Mongols, Finns, and Huns; with 
.some they intermarried; others they pushed into northern and 
Arctic Russia, a region without temptation for the Aryan or other 
Avandering tribes. 

From the Avest came the Northmen, Avho settled the country 
about the Baltic sea and founded NoA'gorod the Great, tlie oldest 
toAvn in Russia, and brought many of the customs and habits 
of western Europe. In the fifteenth century NoA'gorod was the 
largest and most important town in northern Euroj)c and a 


10 


JiUSSIA IX EUROPE 


member of the Hanseatic league. It lost its independence and 
was overthrown hy Ivan the Terrible in 1570, and Novgorod as 
an independent State ceased to exist and is now a town of little 
importance. 

In the thirteenth century the ^Mongol Tartars entered eastern 
Russia and for over 200 years, from 1238 to 1462, ruled, mingling 
their blood with the Russians. They in turn were conquered 
by the Russians and driven from central Russia into the valley 
of the Volga and the Crimea, where their descendants still live. 

In the seventeentli century Poland, then one of the largest 
countries of Europe, undertook the conquest of Russia, and for 
some years there was a life-and-death struggle between the two 
nations. Moscow was captured and the king of Poland reigned 
there for thirteen years. The people of Nijni Novgorod the 
Great arose, selling their wives and daughters to buy arms, took 
Moscow, burning a large part of it, and finally expelled the 
Poles, but not until they had mingled their blood with the Rus- 
sian. This was the last invasion of Russia that left its impress 
on the country. 

The Great Russians, the inhabitants of the black zone in north- 
ern and central Russia, are the most numerous of the poioulation 
of Russia, In the northwest they intermarried and mingled with 
the Finns ; in the east with the Mongol Tartars. In southern 
Russia the inhabitants called Little Russians intermarried with 
the Cossacks and Crimean Tartars and are next in number to 
the Great Russians. The Cossacks are Russians who preferred 
the nomadic to the agricultural life, and therefore wandered into 
the steppes away from civilization and formed bands of horse- 
men, called often by the country in which they lived, as the Don 
Cossacks. They resemble in some respects the cowboys of 
America. They occupied the Crimea and the country north 
of the Black sea, with Tartar tribes from Turania, Kalmucks, 
and Bashkirs. 

Besides the races named, there are Turanians, Armenians, 
Poles, Semites, Georgians, and Turks — in all, thirty different 
races — with Greek, Catholic, Shumanistic, Buddhist, Jewish, 
Mohammedans, Dissenters and pagan religions of all kinds. 
These various races formerly intermarried, but the introduction 
of the ^Mohammedan religion among the Tartar trilies has pre- 
vented further mingling of these various races and has proved 
a great obstacle to their elev'^ation and civilization. I was struck 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


11 


with the variet}’’ of races at a dinner in Piatigorsk, a watering 
place at the foothills of the Caucasus, given by an officer of the 
Pussian army. My host was a German; the other guests, his 
fellow-officers, were a Pole, a Jew, an Armenian, a Caucasian, a 
Georgian, a Tartar, a Mongolian, and, finally, a Russian, 

In a Tartar and Russian village there is no blending of races. 
Near one end stands the Mohammedan mosque ; at the other 
the Christian temple. In Finnish villages, on the oth^r hand, 
intermarriages of the Finns and Russians is causing the blend- 
ing of the two races. 

CH.\RACTERISTICS OF THE POPULATION. 

Russia in Europe, with a population of nearly 100,000,000, is 
very thinly populated, having only fifteen inhabitants to the 
square kilometer, while Germany has seventy-eight and England 
one hundred and fourteen. The population is increasing at a 
more rapid rate than in either of these countries. 

A recent writer says : “ The life that men live in the city gives 
the type and measure of their civilization. The word civiliza- 
tion means the manner of life of the civilized part of the com- 
munity — that is, of the city men, not of the country men, who 
are called rustics.” The cities of Russia, except St. Petersburg, 
are small, far apart, and have little connection with each other 
or influence on the population. The Russian peasant has there- 
fore little knowledge either of city life or of this civilization. He 
lives far removed from it, and there is little of it in Russia. Only 
one-third as many in proportion to population live in the cities 
of Russia as in the cities of the United States. 

Two-thirds of the population, including all the Great and Little 
Russians, live in the black zone, with Moscow as a center. It 
is estimated that over six-eighths of these are either serfs them- 
selves or are the children of serfs, while 6,000,000 of the re- 
mainder are Poles and 2,000,000 .Jews. 

It is impossible that in one generation such a population of 
freedmen should have made any considerable advance. Their 
life and habits are, therefore, mainly such as they were as serfs. 
It should also be borne in mind that while these are descendants 
from Aryans, yet this blood has from time to time and in very 
mau}'^ generations ])oen mingled with the blood of the Asiatics, 
and therefore with nations less civilized. 

The highly civilized man makes nature subordinate to his 


12 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


convenience and necessities, but with uncivilized nations nature 
dominates and man becomes subject to its influence. The char- 
acter and habits of the Russians are therefore largely fashioned 
by their environments, which vary little in different localities. 

Russia has only two seasons, summer and winter. During 
the long Arctic winter the people are without occu])ation, save 
the tending of flocks morning and night ; the days are short and 
sunless y*tlie nights long; the houses, Avithout ventilation, are 
hot and close ; the air bad. Even in my room, in the largest and 
best hotel in St. Petersburg, the windows in early November 
Avere sealed so tight that a breath of air could not get in. The 
rooms Avere heated by steam, Avhich could not be shut off, and 
the only ventilation Avas by a small hole in the Avail, through 
Avhich a little fresh air could enter. The peasants Avear the same 
clothes night and da}' ; all sleep together on the large stoves, and 
are required by their ])riests to bathe every Saturday evening, 
using the vapor bath instead of soap. A large room or cave is 
dug in the earth and heated very hot ; here they sit or lie doAvn ; 
fan themselves Avith a Avhisk brush ; a profuse perspiration opens 
and cleanses the pores of the skin ; they then often plunge into 
an icy stream or bathe in cold Avater. They lead idle, listless lives 
in winter, and Avhen Avinter ends are little inclined to Avork. Then 
folloAv the long, hot summer days, the heat fully as enervating as 
the bitter cold. Without mental or bodily activity, they become 
heavy and lethargic. Their food for generations has been mea- 
ger, of the poorest kind, almost entirely vegetal, and unsuitable 
to the climate. Those avIio survive to mature age have great 
})OAver of endurance, Avhich often becomes stolid stubbornness or 
passive courage and resignation. They are gentle-hearted, have 
little imagination, and therefore no inventive faculty. Every 
peasant, Avhether man or Avoman, Avears a shee[>skin in Avinter, 
bright colors in summer, the garment of nomadic triVjes, not 
Avorn by any other Euroi)ean race. They have little desire to 
rule others, or to make the tril)es Avhom they conquer subserv- 
ient, and are therefore admirably fitted for the Avork of })eaceful 
agricultural colonization. Wages are very Ioav. Tlie manager 
of the telegraph service of one section of Russia, Avith twenty- 
tAVO offices under him, told us that his salary Avas 1,100 rubles, 
or about S550, a year ; that the operators Avere on duty tAventy- 
four hours every other day and received 15 rubles, or 87.50, 
a month. Wallace tells us that “ a family of five, man and 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


13 


.wife, boy, and two daughters, actually lived in the northern 
part of Russia on sixty-one dollars a year.” There are few rail- 
roads in Russia, no stage-coaches, few daily and weekly pa])ers, 
neither magazines nor books, for the peasantry can neither read 
nor write. They have little more knowledge of the nearest vil- 
lage than we have of the moon. 

We can scarce!}^ comprehend such a people or such a life and 
are not surprised to learn that they resort to cards and drink as 
the only relief from the dullness of the interminable winter. 
They never hurry, for time is not money. Among professional 
men and merchants in St. Petersburg business does not com- 
mence until after breakfast, at 11 or 12 o’clock; with dinner at 6 
o’clock, little time is left for work, but a long evening for cards. 

A t}"pical Russian village consists of two lines of houses, one 
on either side of the street, each house, built of pine logs, stand- 
ing alone, from ten to one hundred making a village ; each cabin 
is like its fellow except in size ; when you have seen one you 
have seen all. The floor is of earth ; the walls, rough logs, the 
crevices stuffed with moss, without paint — the type of houses in 
England in the time of Queen Elizabeth. At one end of the vil- 
lage is the cruciform church, of an oriental aspect, a dome gilded 
and painted in bright colors, surmounted by a gilt cross. We 
visited Rostoflf, the center of a large commerce with the interior of 
Russia, a city with a population of 50,000, at the mouth of the 
Don, inhabited by Russians and Cossacks. It has a large casino, 
containing a ball-room, gai'dens, billiaixl and refreshment rooms, 
where all grades of society assemble on Sunday to dance and 
hold parties of pleasure. We spent two hours here and took a 
drosky drive to the town about a mile distant. It is a long, dirty, 
.straggling, unkempt village, with broad streets, paved in the time 
of Peter tlie Great, apparently never repaired since his death ; the 
onl v difference in the streets is that some are worse than others ; a 
few large stores and a great market place, with bread enough for 
an army ; potatoes, quantities of beautiful-looking tomatoes, egg- 
plants, gra})es, and pears. The place looked as though it had 
considerable trade, l>ut is devoid of all interest. A\'e saw no new 
or fine buildings; only old and dilapidated houses. 

In Russia there is no nnddle class and little intercourse be- 
tween the officials, who are the highest clas.s — the nobles, who 
are the upper class — and the peasants. They live in a world as 
distinct as Europe and Asia. 'I'he ui)per class follow the customs 


14 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


and manners of the west. Formerly they used the German lan-» 
guage, then tlie French, taking from France liberal ideas, but now 
Ivussian is the language of the court and has been adopted in 
polite society. The upper classes are as highly cultivated, as 
honorable, and as polished as any of the upper classes in 
Europe. 

The peasantry, recently serfs, in their feelings and habits are 
Asiatics, fliithful to ancient manners and customs. They look 
upon innovation or change with distrust. St. Petersburg is the 
type of the new ideas, IMoscow of the old. 

We now turn to northern and Arctic Russia, a country with 
inhabitants very different from that we have just described. In 
the west is Finland, formerl}" subject to Sweden, but annexed to 
Russia in 1800. The name and origin of the Finns is an ethno- 
logical problem. They are supposed to be of the same race as 
the Hungarian and Bashkirs. In summer the sun’s rays are 
nearly constant, and the growth of vegetation continuous and 
ra})id. 

The people are tall, strongly built, and well proportioned, with 
faces rather square than oval. They are slow, dull, grateful and 
honest, industrious and energetic. Their peculiar language and 
literature have attracted much attention, and although writing 
seems to have been introduced onl}'- al)out three hundi*ed years 
ago and printing about one hundred years later, yet nearly all 
can read and write. 

In the written language phonetic spelling is employed with 
almost perfect consistenc 3 ^ One celebrated linguist says, “ it is 
the most harmonious and sonorous of tongues.” The}’’ are better 
educated, more highly civilized, and are improving more rajndly 
than the Russians. Serfdom was never introduced into Finland, 
and the Finns boast that the}’’ have never had a slave nor a noble 
in all their land. From these causes, while we regard the Rus- 
sians as Asiatics, we must look upon tlie Finns as Europeans. 
Northeast of Finland, on the Arctic circle, and hir to the north 
of it, wliere the shore-line stretches from Archangel toward the 
sunrise fifteen hundred miles, bound in ice chains for eight 
months of the year, where on the cliffs and ledges the snow 
never melts, a wandering tribe, sometimes called Samoyeds, 
live in a desert of ice and snow — a land without a road, with- 
out a field, without a name. Tlieir dwellings are tents l)uilt 
of poles, open at the to]> to let out the smoke, and covered 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


15 


with loose reindeer skins, secured by thongs of seal and walrus 
hide; within are small compartments, the whole warmed by a 
fire in the center of the tent and a seal-oil lamp in each com- 
partment. They own herds of reindeer, which alone make 
the region habitable. In summer they move frequently for 
food to fresh pastures of green moss, on which the reindeer 
feed, and on them the wild men of the country live, eating their 
food without cooking. In the winter they draw near the shore 
and live on seal and cod. They hunt the squirrel and fox and 
sell their skins to the Russians, and thus purchase a few of the 
necessaries of life. Their only arms are the bow and arrow. The 
Samoyeds are believed by some to be Finns, who, forced far 
into the Arctic -region, have degenerated and lost most of the 
peculiar habits of the Finns. 

South of the agricultural zone we come to a third civilization, 
to another and different life, in the lands of the southwest 
and in the saline steppes in the southeast. These were inhab- 
ited by Cossacks, Tartars, Bashkirs, Kalmucks, and other no- 
madic tribes, who wandered over the steppes to find pasture 
for their cattle. 

Among these tribes one hundred years ago Catherine II 
planted colonies of Germans to cultivate the land, establish set- 
tlements, intermingle and intermarry with the people, and in- 
troduce agriculture, thrift, and habits of industry. This experi- 
ment failed, for the Germans have lived almost entirely among 
themselves, and, while acquiring many of the bad habits of the 
people, have done little toward improving them. Since the law 
compelled the Cossacks and Tartars to live in fixed habitations 
many have migrated intoTurania, Armenia, and Turkey in Asia, 
while from Armenia and Turkey Armenians, Greeks, Druses, and 
other Christians have come and.'built flourishing towns and cities 
on the Black and Aral seas and river Volga. These new settlers 
are the most industrious and prosperous of the Russians, and 
immigration will continue as long as these countries are under 
Mohammedan rule. Before the emancipation of the serf, in 
1861 , the ])atriarchal system prevailed, under which each family 
was its ))roducerand consumer. Since then manufactures have 
rapidly increased and have nearly doubled the last twelve years. 
The mining interest has also increased with like rapidity ; the 
annual production of the mines is $ 67 , 000 , 000 . 

The mercantile or trading class and the manufacturers, usually 


IG 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


the most im])ortaiit and influential, are in Russia less in pro- 
portion tlian in other civilized countries, and have little influ- 
ence, either witli tlie peasants, as they represent western ideas, 
or with the nobles, avIio look down upon them as traders. 

This completes a general enumeration of the inhabitants of 
Russia. We have described the lives of tlie hunters and fisher- 
men of the north, of the agricultural laborers of central Russia, 
of the nomadic po})ulation of southern and southeastern Russia, 
and the mercantile or trading class and the manufacturers, who 
live around Moscow and Tula. 

• Under one czar, Vladimir the Holy, the peasants could change 
their religion ; under another, Peter the Great, they could change 
their dress, but time alone can change the Asiatic to the Euro- 
pean. 

The black zone of Russia is as rich as the prairies of America ; 
the lands cost no more; yet the inhabitants of Austria and Ger- 
many, contiguous to this fertile land, immigrate four thousand 
miles to the prairies of America rather than cross the boundary 
line into this rich zone. One reason for their preferring America 
is that in Russia they will be called upon to serve in the army. 
While this is undoubtedly one cause for their preference of 
America, yet, as the Germans and Russians have never mingled 
when they have been brought into contact, it is probable that 
the difference in the habits and customs of the two races — the 
one European, the other Asiatic — has as much, if not more, in- 
fluence in preventing the Germans from emigrating to Russia. 


GOVERNMENT. 


The diversity of races and languages was formerly much 
greater than at present, when each tribe had its ovm laws, re- 
ligion and customs, more or less barbarous, but in all the pa- 
ternal form of government. The head of the family and chief of 
th^ tribe had absolute power over the family and tribe ; the 
czar a like absolute power over all the tribes. The czar is the 
head of the government, and the peasants believe him to be aj>- 
pointed by God to be their father and ruler. A republican form 
of government once e.xisted in Novgorod the Great, and also at 
Pskoff, but these republics, after enduring one or Uvo hundi*ed 
years, were attacked by wandering triljes from the Orient and by 
armed bands from Germany, Sweden and Poland. For the 


BCSSIA IX EUROPE 


17 


purpose of repellinp; these invasions these cities were forced to 
unite with various tribes of Russia and form a strong imperial 
government under a czar. 

Peter tlie Great organized municipal governments for towns 
and cities after the model of the German free cities, but these 
institutions having no root in the traditions and habits of tlie 
people, it has been impossil)le to maintain them or .to interest 
the people in them. 

For many generations there has been no convocation or as- 
semblage of the people. The entire civilization has been Asiatic, 
differing greatly from that of the west. There was formerly no 
attempt either at uniformity in the government of the different 
provinces and nationalities or of symmetry in the administra- 
tion. There were not only territorial peculiarities, but different 
systems in the same territory. Changes in the laws were fre- 
quently made, but they Avere only local. 

The idea of an united Russia belongs to Czar Ivan Kalita, Avho 
reigned in the middle of the fourteenth, century, though Peter 
the Great was the first to realize the necessity of a uniform and 
central administration if Russia was to become a great nation. 
He tried to bring order out of chaos and to inti’oduce Avestern 
civilization among the barbarous and oriental tribes of Russia, 
and, as there Avere no persons qualified for official positions, 
schools Avere formed to train men for office. Peter the Great had 
untiring zeal, perseverance, great ability, and genius. He tried 
many experiments, but frankly admitted their failure, and died, 
having overthroAvn many institutions, but Avithout creating a 
system. His successors took up the Avork and carried it forward, 
each according to his ability, and by sIoav degrees they have 
created a centralized government, Avith a certain uniformity in its 
administration. There are ranks of nobility, but, unlike those 
of Avestern Europe, the nobles have no [)olitical poAver or right 
of primogeniture. All their children are of equal rank, so that 
nobles are found among the drosky drivers of >St. Petersburg ; 
their influence de[)ends solely on Avealth and personal character. 

A council and ministers or secretaries for the different de[)art- 
ments of government have been established, but there is neither 
uniformity of action betAveen the council and ministers nor 
betAveen the several members of the council or ministry. For 
the i)urpose of obtaining fuller information and from a greater 
variety of sources, the czar, in important matters, often ap})oints 


18 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


committees to examine and report directly to him and advise 
what action, if any, shall be taken. 

There is a code of laws, full of commentaries, with a vast num- 
l)er of orders, decrees, and statutes issued by the czar at differ- 
ent times and under different circumstances; also innumerable 
circulars, open and secret, general, special, and local, forming a 
tangled growth, so that it is impossible to decide either what the 
law is or what are the rights of the individual. It is difficult for 
the czar or his ministers to know how far an order has been 
executed, for with a censorship of the press it is impossible for 
either the people or the ruler to know much of the conduct of 
affairs. 

Russia is divided into eighty-five governments and six terri- 
tories of different areas and population, over each of which is a 
governor, responsible to the czar, and a council, wdth a strong 
centralized administration. The power of the governor is nearly 
as absolute and unlimited in his territory as that of the czar 
over the whole empire. Each government is divided into dis- 
tricts. The governor appoints officials in the various districts, 
who are responsible to him, and these officials appoint jDolice 
officers in the several villages, responsible only to them. The 
salaries of the lower officers are very small, and as thej’’ are 
barely sufficient for their support this has led to more or less 
corruption, although in Russia, as in other countries, embezzle- 
ment has not been confined to any class or rank. This was 
greatly lessened under the late czar, Alexander III, in the cen- 
tral government and in the great administrations. 

THE MIR. 

In Great and Little Russia, Avherever the Slav inhaliits, the vil- 
lage community, called the mir, has been persistent and exists 
today in a form not widely different from that which prevailed 
in ancient Arya and all over Europe and Asia. There are 
, 107,493 of these communes in Russia. All the land is held 
by the mir, owned in common, and is divided into three })or- 
tions — arable, forest, and pasture. The homes are all in the 
village. The fields, cut into long, narrow strips, are periodically 
divided among the families, so that each family shall have strips 
according to its size and numbers. There is a redistribution 
every few years. Nearly all the women and the greater part of 
the men are engaged in the cultivation of the land. All the 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


19 


affairs and business of the mir are regulated in a council, com- 
posed of the adult men and of the adult women when heads of 
a famil3^ This village assembly has power to try and punish 
criminals, and can even send them to Siberia. It is the only 
government of which the vast majority of Russians have any 
experience or in which they take an interest. The peasant gov-' 
crning the world in which he lives does not concern himself 
with the unseen and far away. 

The mir, with the exception of community of property and 
judicial authority, is the counterpart of the New England town 
meeting, the corner-stone of our republican institutions. 

The brightest men leave the commune and go to the cities to 
work as artisans, but they must first obtain permission from the 
mir, return to it when ordered, and send a part of their earnings 
to the village treasury or forfeit all their interest in the com- 
munal property and all connection with their ancestral home 
and kindred. The land and property being held in common 
affords little opportunity for that struggle for wealth and a better 
and higher life absolutely necessary for progress. It is indeed 
a communistic, socialistic system, which some, even in our day, 
propose to engraft upon our life. 

Within fifteen or twenty years the power of the mir has been 
greatly limited by the establishment of the provincial govern- 
ment, with its police officer, the representative of provincial 
government, the police having much greater jDower in his vil- 
lage than formerly. 

SERFDOM. 

Serfdom and slavery, unknown in Russia before the fifteenth 
century, originated from several i)eculiar causes. Prior to the 
conquest of Russia by the Tartars, in the thirteenth century, the 
condition of the peasants of Russia and western Europe was 
in many respects very dissimilar. Russia never felt the bene- 
fits either of Roman law and civilization or of the Roman Cath- 
olic church ; neither the influence of large towns with municipal 
rights and privileges nor of the feudal system. The Teutons had 
a sturdy independence and asserted their rights, while the most 
enterprising of the Russians, having a i)redisi>osition to a vagrant 
life, preferred to seek independence l)y wandering away from 
tlieir communes, forming Cossack bands. This vagrancy was in- 
creased under the Tartar rule, when the ])resent Asiatic dress of 
sheei)skin was adoi>ted and other Asiatic habits accpiired. 


20 


PRUSSIA IX EUPOPE 


Another marked difference between eastern and western 
Europe, which also led to serfdom, arose from the ownership 
of the land, in Avestern Europe held in comparatively small par- 
cels and divided between the church, the nobles, and the people, 
Avhile in Russia the Czar, as owner of all the land, gave great 
ffracts to a few families or to religious houses, retaining the re- 
mainder ; hut these gifts were of little value Avhile the peasantry 
were allowed to roani Avherever and whenever they i)leased. 

LaAVS Avere passed to remedy tliis evil by confining the peas- 
antiy to certain parts of the countiy, and subsequently to the 
estates Avhere thcA' lived. Conscription of the serfs for the army 
Avas then introduced, the proprietor Avas made responsible for the 
entry of the conscript into the army, and from that arose the obli- 
gation of the serf to the master. As the serf could only he profit- 
ably employed on the rich black lands around Moscoav and Kief, 
the number of serfs diminished Avith the distance from the 
black zone, Avhile in the extreme north and the steppes of the 
south it never existed. They either Avorked three days in the 
week for their masters, having the rest of the Aveek for them- 
selves, or they gaA^e a corresponding portion of their crops, or 
else one-half of their Avages to their masters. It Avas by sIoav 
degrees, subsequent to 1450, that serfdom Avas established and 
the serfs became ])ersonal property. With this right of projAcrty 
came control of life and limb, and these successive changes, 
often regulated by hiAvs passed for the relief of the serf, generally 
resulted in binding his chains tighter. 

The act of emancipation in 1861 liberated 49,486,000 serfs, of 
Avhom 23,022,000 belonged to the nobles ; 23,138,000 to the state, 
and 3,326,000 to the departments. 

A portion of the land OAvned by the state and of that OAvned 
by the nobles and religious houses Avas by the act of emancipa- 
tion given to the serfs. The government paid the nobles and 
religious houses sums fixed by arbitration for the lands surren- 
dered by them, while the serfs paid the state for the land given 
to them by annual payments running over fifty years, secured by 
the land and also by the other property of the serfs. The last 
of these payments Avill not be due until the early part of the 
next century. Even noAv 40 per cent of the land is OAvned^hy 
the state, 2 per cent by the imperial family, 33 per cent by the 
peasantry, and 25 per cent by private owners. 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


21 


EDUCATION. 

There has never been any national system of education in 
Russia. Many noble and wealthy families have English nurses 
and French or German tutors. The children are taught to speak 
French, English, and German and formerl}’- were often better 
educated in those languages than in their native tongue. 

There are nine universities in Russia, with between fifteen and 
eighteen thousand students, who are mostly from poor families 
and often support themselves by teaching. They strongly de- 
sire to reform the government, but are ignorant of any other way 
of accomplishing their object than by its overthrow. They have 
therefore become nihilists, hoping to improve the people with- 
out realizing how much evil they do. They have converted 
the universities into hot-beds of nihilism. The government has 
consequently subjected the students to very strict regulations, 
not only in their study but in their life outside as well as within 
the university, the tendency now being to restrict instruction and 
confine it to specified lines. 

In addition to these nine universities, there are medical and 
professional schools for engineers, electricians, and mechanics, 
not included in the above enumeration. Each of the eighty-five 
governments has a grammar or high school, and the pupils on 
graduating from these schools can enter the higher seminaries. 

There are also secondary common schools and gymnasiums, 
with 2,o00,000 scholars, while there are 15,000,000 of school age. 
Of every ten Russian men, two may be able to read, but of eveiy 
ten Russian women, hardl}^ one. For the last ten years consider- 
able sums have been appro|)riated by the government for edu- 
cational purposes, and in 1893 $31,000,000 by the general and 
local governments ; $175,000,000 a year were expended on the 
arm}’- and $22,000,000 on the navy, while in the United States 
$150,000,000 are annually expended for education. 

Slight as are their educational privileges, and probably liecause 
they are so slight, the ])eople have no desire for a better and 
fuller system. Daring my stay at Nijni Novgorod I was invited 
to go over the house of one of the wealthiest men in the ])lace. 
It was a very magnificent house, with a broad marlde stairway 
leading to the salon, the floor of which was mosaic and the hang- 
ings fine tapestry. I visited every room in the house; in only 
one did 1 see a book, ])aper, or Avriting materials of any kind, 
and that was the children’s school-room. I was informed that 


22 


nUSSIA IN EUROPE 


neither the master nor mistress could read or write, hut I was, 
perhaps, misinformed. On leaving I kissed the hand of the lady 
of the house, and in return she kissed rny forehead, the invari- 
able custom in old Russian families in l)idding adieu to guests 
with Avhom they were pleased. The family, I was informed, 
lived in two or three small rooms, keeping the others for show 
and an occasional party. 

Within the present century Russia has developed a literature 
of i^oetry and prose, history and romance, excelled by no other 
nation. Few novels are more read today than those of Tour- 
geniefF and Tolstoi and other Russian Avriters. Most of them 
recount tales of Russia and Russian life, and have a Avide circu- 
lation in other countries. The education of these Avriters and 
their mental training have been essentially Russian, and their 
Avritings, therefore, touch the heart of the Russian people, and 
this has led a constantly increasing number to learn to read- 
There is also a large number of folk songs and tales Avhich are 
Avidely sung and recited among the jAeasantry. Science has also 
made as rapid progress as belles-letters. There are no better 
geologists and chemists in the world than the Russian, Avhile 
other scientists are not far behind. In 1892, 9,588 books Avere 
produced, with an aggregate of 30,000,000 copies. 

THE FAIR AT NIJMI NOA^GOROD. 

The geographical position of Nijni Novgorod is most favorable 
as a gathering place for people from all parts of Russia and the 
Orient. Situated at the junction of the Volga and Oka, it is 
easily accessible by these rivers and their branches and canal 
connections to people from all parts of Russia and from some 
parts of Asia. It is also the nearest large city to the lowest 
passes for caraA^ans between Russia and China. This position 
makes Nijni NoA'gorod the natural place for the great fair of 
Russia. These fairs Avere formerly held in all the countries of 
Europe and Avere largel}’^ attended, but Avith good roads, steam- 
boats, and railroads the necessity for them has ceased, excepting 
in Russia and some parts of Asia. 

In 1881 I visited the fair at Nijni NoA’^gorod. Held on Ioav, 
flat ground opposite the city, for more than five hundred years 
this fair, though not ahvays held at Nijni Novgorod, has l^een 
the great mart of exchange for the products of Russia, Sil^eria, 
China, Persia, Turania, and the Crimea. The fair is opened in 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


23 


July and continues through August and September. Some of 
the articles for sale are brought by rail, but most by barges or 
steamboat. I counted fifty tugs from one point, while two or 
three times as many were anchored in other parts of the river. 

From Siberia are brought furs and diamonds, precious stones, 
fine-toned bells, iron and wooden utensils, Siberian shoes, made 
of felt, impervious to snow or water, heat or cold. From China 
come caravan tea, worth $2.50 per pound, the finest tea that is 
drunk, and brick tea, the poorest, worth only 15 cents per 
pound. From Persia come precious stones, fruits, carpets, and 
silks ; from Circassia, shawls, slippers, and oils ; cotton from 
Khiva and Bokhara ; oil and wool from Astrakhan ; from west- 
ern Russia, woolen, linen, and vast quantities of hardware, nails, 
and steel, while Germany, France, and England sell their goods 
by sample. There is a palace with salons for great and small 
balls and dinners. There are streets with buildings and stores 
of stone, brick, and iron. These were found insufficient, and 
three thousand bazaars of a temporary nature are often erected. 
The same merchants come year after year, and often from gen- 
eration to generation, and occupy the same buildings. Some 
come on horseback with their stores, others with steam-tugs 
towing barges filled with merchandise. Near by on the rivpr 
Oka are sheds, nearly a mile in length, filled with Siberian 
iron, rolled, bar, and cast iron rods, plate iron, and boiler 
plates, wire, hollow-ware, stoves, nails, and all descriptions of 
rough iron-work. Here also are churches for all creeds — Rus- 
sians, Chinese, Tartars, Buddhists, Catholics, and Lutherans. 

After the fair is over, by the middle or last of September, the 
place is deserted, stores and houses closed, the goods are taken 
away, and not a soul is seen in the place where only a few days 
before three or four hundred thousand people were gathered. 
The bridge of boats which connects the fair-ground with Nijni 
is taken down and removed for the winter. 


TRAVELING. 

The different methods of traveling show the habits and civiliza- 
tion of a people. In the far north of Russia the sledge and tlie 
reindeer are only used ; in Finland, steam or sail lioat or sledge. 
Travel in summer by land is unusual ; they wait for sleighing 
or go by boat. In central Russia they travel by railroad or 


24 


RUSSIA IX EUROPE 


tarantass ; over the Caucasus and generally through the country 
by tarantass. 

In southeastern Russia the horse and camel are the sole means 
of locomotion, and travel is generally l)y caravan. In several of 
the large cities there are hotels, as in other parts of Euro])e, but 
in tlie country hotels are unknown ; only rooms are furnished at 
khans or caravansaries, as all travelers carry their servants, pro- 
visions, bed, and bedding. Everywhere is found the samovar, a 
large copper vessel, with a long tube or funnel extending to the 
bottom, kept filled with charcoal, which when lighted smoulders 
all day long, keeping the water hot day and night, ready for 
making tea. In the conveyances for travel, in the hotels, and 
in everything else outside the large cities Asiatic customs pre- 
vail. There are regular stations where horses are kept, but they 
cannot be obtained without a prodovoina — a paper signed by 
the proper officer — which gives the traveler a right to claim the 
horses at a price fixed in the paper, which is usually very low. 

From Berlin to St. Petersburg and INIoscow the sleei)ers are 
large, roonyv, and clean ; the accommodations for sleeping are 
excellent ; the stations and restaurants are well appointed, large, 
and handsome. After leaving Moscow, the first night we liad 
pillow-cases and mattress in the sleepers, but no sheets ; the 
second night neither pillow-cases nor mattress. 

South of Moscow, when I was tliere the stations were poor, 
without restaurants, and even without water for washing. M'e 
reached Vladikavkaz at night and drove direct!}^ to a hotel 
which we understood was kept by a Frenchman, but he had 
left, and there was no one in the hotel, or apparently in the vil- 
lage, who could speak either French, German, or English. For- 
tunately we found a l)oy from one of the neighboring German 
settlements who could speak German. 

The next morning we started on our tri}>, through the Dariel 
pass, across the Caucasus in a tarantass, a boat-shaped, covered 
carriage without springs or seats, for the roads are so rough that 
springs would soon break, without opportunit}" for repairs. We 
leaned against our trunks in the back of the carriage, filled with 
straw. We started with four horses abreast, dilven with six 
reins, one to each of the outside horses and the other four to the 
pole-horses. We drove rapidly, but were often delayed at post- 
stations waiting for horses. While we were stopping, more than 
once, an official drove up. Horses Avere immediately harnessed 


RUSSIA IN EUROPE 


25 


and he drove on, although we had been told that there were no 
horses in the stables. We took a few provisions with us and 
found something to eat at one or two of the stations. At night 
there was only one common room, where all lodged and slept 
on the floors or benches, and as this is also used as a waiting- 
room for travelers by night while their horses are being changed, 
there was little opportunity for sleeping. The Russians carry 
their own beds and provisions, but we were not so fortunate, and 
so were obliged to lie on the boards, with straw for our beds. 

At the end of the second day we were over the mountains and 
in Asia. We stopped at the post-station. Our provisions were 
gone, and we could get nothing at the station but a samovar with 
hot water ; so, late at night, we drove on to Tiflis, a city of over 
one hundred thousand inhabitants. 

Through Tiflis the river Kur runs, with beautiful views of 
mount Kazbek and the snow peaks of the Caucasus to the north. 
Steep banks on either side divide the city into two parts, the one 
new, with fine boulevards, European civilization, and handsome 
houses, occupied solely by Russian officials ; the other, the old 
part, on hilly ground, inhabited by Persians, Armenians, Geor- 
gians, and others from the many different tribes of the Caucasus. 
Here are bazaars like those of Constantinople, Cairo, or Damas- 
cus, where goods from all parts of the Orient are sold. 

CONCLtSION. 

Many causes have been and are still at work that must arouse 
the Russians. Tlie first great impulse arose in the early part of 
the iH’esent century, during the Napoleonic wars, when the Rus- 
sian armies gathered from all parts of the kingdom, marched to 
Berlin and Vienna, and mingled with the armies of Prussia and 
Austria. Then came the invasion of Russia by Napoleon, the 
burning of Moscow, followed l)y the second march of the Rus- 
sian armies through Europe, and their entry into Paris in 1814, 
in each case coming home with enlarged vision and new ideas. 
Second, the introduction of steamboats on the rivers; third, the 
Crimean war and fall of Sebastopol, which aroused tlie ruling 
class to the ncce.ssity for railroads and better intercommunica- 
tion between the different parts of the empire, and led to the 
construction of three lines of railroad from the north to the south 
through the length of Russia, and three lines from its western to 


2(3 


nUSSlA IX EUROPE 


its eastern boundary, thus inviting the people to travel from 
place to i^lace and to see more of the world; fourth, as a second 
result of the Crimean war was the freedom of the serfs in 1861 
from a slavery of one hundred and fifty years ; fifth, the con- 
struction of the railroad across the Ural mountains to Siberia^ 
and its subsequent extension east, through the southern part of 
the country, to the Pacific, through the rich agricultural region 
of Siberia ; sixth, the trans-Caspian conquest and the construc- 
tion of the railroad along the borders of Persia and Afghanistan, 
across the desert and the river Oxus to Samarcand, opening up 
several countries and a large population to the manufactures 
and commerce of Russia ; thus a large and profitable commerce 
has been created or diverted from England to Russia, which 
must greatly benefit Russia and trans-Caspia ; seventh, the ex- 
port of grain and petroleum from Russia to Europe, which is 
rapidly increasing, and the money obtained in exchange niust 
greatly benefit the Russian farmer. 

The destinies of Asia are in the hands of Russia and England, 
and are more intimately connected with Russia than with Eng- 
land, for the Russians have greater affinity with the Asiatics 
than the English, their influence over them is greater, and the 
Asiatics are more easily reconciled to the government of Russia 
than to that of the English. 

This contact and intercourse tend to develop both Asiatics and 
Russians. The day of awakening, of progress, of education, of 
prosperity to the Russian peasant is sure to come ; but whether 
this civilization shall be that of Europe and America or Asia and 
China is uncertain. Russia, with her empire extending from the 
Atlantic to the Pacific, Avill become the leading nation of the 
Orient. 



NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL II. 



U. S. REVENUE-MARINE STEAMER “ BEAR ” MOORED TO A FIELD OF ICE IN BERING SEA. 



ARCTIC CRUISE OF THE REVENUE CUTTER ^‘BEAR^^ 27 


THE ARCTIC CRUISE OF THE UNITED STATES 
REVENUE CUTTER “BEAR” 

By Dr Sheldon Jackson, United States General Agent of Edu- 
cation in Alaska 

Expeditions to the Arctic have alwa}^s had a fascination for 
mankind. From the early voyages of the Norsemen down 
through the successive expeditions of Davis, Baffin, and Ross to 
that of Peary the world has honored the men who have braved 
the dangers of the Arctic in voyages of discovery lasting from 
one to three years, but little account has been made of the 
whalers who have encountered these same dangers for many 
3 ’ears in succession, and particularly of the United States reve- 
nue cutter service that has annually ventured into these icy re- 
gions for sixteen years past. The service began in 1880 with the 
sending of the little cutter Corwin into the Arctic in search of 
the Jeannette, and an Arctic cruise has been made each season 
since that time. In 1883 the steamer Bear, after the rescue of 
General Greely and party of the Lady Franklin bay expedition, 
was turned over to the United States Treasury Department and 
detailed for the Arctic service. She is a barquentine-rigged 
steamer, 198 feet long, 30 feet wide, and 18.5 feet deep, with a 
capacity of 714 tons. She was built at Greenock, Scotland, for 
the Dundee sealing and whaling fleet, and is .an excellent sea 
boat — in fact the best in the Arctic ocean for work in the ice. 
The commanding officer from 1884 to the present time has been 
Captain Michael A. Healy, an officer justlv^ rendered famous by 
his long, successful, and in many ways remarkable service in the 
dangerous waters of Arctic Alaska. 

The annual cruise of the Bear to the Arctic ocean is unique in 
its multifarious duties and its practical usefulness. In addition 
to the ordinary duties of a revenue cutter in protecting the in- 
terests of the customs, more particularly Ijy the prevention of 
smuggling l)y the whaling fleet, this steamer has performed the 
duty of a traveling life-saving station. During these twelve 
years it has rescued from the l)leak and sterile coast of western 
and Arctic Alaska a thousand shipwrecked whalers and desti- 
tute mariners. Not a season passes without one or more whalers 


28 ARCTIC CRUISE OF THE REVENUE CUTTER ^‘BEAR'^ 


being wrecked and relief being furnished by the Bear. In addi- 
tion to affording relief to the whaling fleet in times of disaster 
and peril, its record is equally brilliant in the protection of thou- 
sands of half-civilized natives from the rai)acity of the white 
man and the demoralization that comes from the white man’s 
rum. Along vast stretches of coast ( from 10,000 to 12,000 miles) 
unknown to civilization, the flag of the revenue steamer is the 
only evidence of the authority of the Government that is ever 
seen and the only protection ever afforded. The cruiser Bear also 
furnishes the only medical attendance which the natives living 
along thousands of miles of coast ever receive. In 1890 the 
importance of its annual cruise was still further increased by its 
affording transportation to the United States general agent of 
education in Alaska in his establishment and supervision of 
Government schools in western and Arctic Alaska, and in 1891 
still another addition was made to its usefulness by its being 
employed in the transportation of domestic reindeer from Siberia 
to Alaska. Its visits to the native villages upon the American 
coast and the search for reindeer along the coast of Siberia bring 
it into. many bays and regions little known to the geogra})hic 
world. During the establishment of schools and the introduc- 
tion of domestic reindeer into Alaska the writer was enabled, 
by the permission of the Secretary of the Treasury and the 
courtesy of Captain Healy, to make five consecutive annual 
cruises along the Arctic coasts of Siberia and Alaska. The work 
being now well under way, his place was this season taken by 
the assistant agent, Mr William Hamilton. The cruise of the 
Bear in 1895 was over much the same course as in previous years. 

After }»atrolling the North Pacific during IMay and June the 
Bear left the wharf at Dutch harbor, Unalaska, on June 24 for 
her Arctic trip. The next day she sighted through the fog first 
St. George island and then St. Paul. The sea being too rough 
to land, the ship pushed on to the northwest, passing St. IMat- 
thew island on June 26, and reaching anchorage at St. Law- 
rence island on June 28. Very soon the natives swarmed on 
board, bringing tidings that IMr and Mrs Gamble, in charge of 
the Government school on the island, were in excellent health 
and had had a very successful year. A sewing machine aftid a 
cabinet organ for Mrs Gamble, with supplies for the family and 
a twelve months’ mail, were landed safely through the surf. 
Hoisting anchor on June 30 the Bear crossed over to Indian 


HERD OF REINDEER LYING DOWN. 
Photographed hi/ .4. L. Broadhent, U. B. i 



VOL. VII, 1896. PL. III. 



ARCTIC CRUISE OF THE REVENUE CUTTER ^‘BEAR" 29 


point, Siberia, about 40 miles distant. There two Cossack officers 
of the Russian arm 3 ^ were found taking a census of the village. 
This was the first visit of Russian officials to that section of the 
Siberian coast in many years, and the natives brought the Russian 
coins they had received from them over to the ship to sell as 
curios. Here, as elsewhere on the ti’ip, the ship’s surgeon went 
ashore to treat the sick and ailing. The principal native of the 
village is Koharri, who is a noted trader all along the coast. He 
has a little frame whale-house filled from floor to ceiling with 
tobacco, flour, and looking-glasses, which he has obtained from 
the whalers and from which he sui)plies the country for hun- 
dreds of miles around. This man has been known to have as 
much as §75,000 worth of whalebone in his storehouse at one 
time. He does a business of probably §100,000 a year, and yet 
not a single coin of gold or silver nor a single bank note or bank 
check is used, nor are any books kept. All transactions are by 
barter, furs and whalebones being exchanged for tobacco, flour, 
and whisk\^ This wholesale merchant of the North Siberian 
coast can neither read nor write, nor can any one associated with 
him. Although so wealthy, he lives in an ordinary tent and 
sleeps on the ground, on a pile of reindeer skins. 

On several occasions the Bear, in search of reindeer, has turned 
southward from Indian point and sailed up Holy Cross sound, 
at the head of Anadir gulf, some 300 miles into Siberia. In 
1893, while in search of reindeer, Ave discovered a large river 
emptying into Holy Cross sound. After visiting a herd of rein- 
deer, an officer and crew entered the mouth of this stream, the 
Bear being the first ocean steamer that had ever ploAved those 
waters. This season the Bear, turning northward, anchored, on 
July 1, off South head, St. Lawrence bay. Peter and Kaimok, 
the leading men of that section, came on board and sold 40 head 
of reindeer. The herd, however, Avas on the opposite side of the 
baj' and could not be reached until the ice should go out, a month 
later. Being unAvilling to Avait, the captain set sail for King 
island, Avhich Avas reached the next morning. At tins point dur- 
ing two previous seasons the Bear Avas caught and imprisoned in 
large ice floes. 

Leaving the island at 8 a. m., the Bear soon encountered large 
cakes of ice at the entrance to Port Clarence. Forcing her Avay 
through the ice, she found seven Avhalers at anclior inside, and 
news Avas receiA’cd of the successful winter of the reindeer herds. 


30 ARCTIC CRUISE OF THE REVENUE CUTTER 


The 4th of July was spent with the whaling fleet, at anchor. .A 
baseball game on shore and a salute of twenty-one guns at noon, 
with a dinner on the Bear to the whaling captains, comprised 
the public celebration of the day. On July 5 the Bear left for 
St. Michael, where she arrived the following day. On July 8 
anchor was hoisted and a trip was made to the native village on 
Sledge island. On July 9 the steamer made Bering straits, 
calling at East cape, where four or flve influential natives were 
taken on board to aid in procuring reindeer. Learning that 
there was a large herd about 50 miles to the northward, the vessel 
entered the Arctic ocean. Early in the morning of Juh' 11 the 
Bear, picking and pushing her way through the ice, reached Utan 
At this place 16 deer Avere purchased and brought on board. 
Continuing the trip up the coast, the Bear tied up to a huge ice 
floe near caj)e Serdz;e, Siberia. ^Vhile there target practice was 
had at distant pieces of ice. On the 14th, learning that there 
were some deer at Chacoran, the vessel steamed over to that 
village, Avhere 22 deer were secured. The ice closing in, the 
cutter was compelled to move a few miles forther south. At this 
point 73 head of deer Avere purchased, and at midnight the Bear 
got under Avay for the reindeer station at Port Clarence, passing 
through a gale on the 16th and reaching point Spencer on the 
17th, Avhere she anchored. About noon on the 20th, the gale 
haA'ing subsided, the Bear steamed over to the station and landed 
the deer. The brig W. U. Meyer, Avith the annual supi)lies for 
the several stations and schools, Avas found Avrecked on the beach 
in front of the station, having gone ashore during the gale on 
the night of the 17th. The supplies for the reindeer station had 
fortunately all been landed, but those for the schools at cape 
Prince of W'ales and point BarroAV Avere lost. 

On .July 22 the Bear Aveighed anchor and headed for Siberia 
for another load of reindeer, and on July 23 she reached St. LaAV- 
rence bay. On the 24th she steamed to the head of the bay, 
Avhere 43 head Avere secured. The next day she returned to the 
reindeer station, Avhere the deer Avere landed on the 26th. On the 
28th, the Bear having taken on board Mr and Mrs Hanna, Avho 
had been Avrecked on the IF. H. Meyer, Avith their supplies re- 
ceived from reindeer station, sailed for cape Prince of Whiles, 
Avhere they Avere landed that afternoon. Again hoisting anchor 
the steamer left for Kotzebue sound. On the Avay the schooner 
Jessie Avas boarded and examined. On J uly 30 the Bear anchored 


SCENE AT POINT BARROW IN APRIL. 



NAT. GEOG. MAG. VOL. VII, 1896, PL. IV. 





ARCTIC CRUISE OF THE REVENUE CUTTER ^HEAPU' 


31 


in the lee of Chamisso island. On the 31st, while the vessel was 
lying windbound, Dr Sharp and Mr Justice, of the Philadelphia 
Academy of Sciences, and Mr William Hamilton, of the Bureau 
of Education, together with a party of officers, made an excur- 
sion to Choris peninsula. On August 5 the steamer left for point 
Hope, where it arrived next day. Here the school and whaling- 
stations were visited, and Dr Driggs. one of the teachers, who 
had been in that country for five years, was taken on board to 
return to the states for a vacation. 

On August 7 the Bear started up the coast for point Barrow, 
wending its way through large packs of floating ice, and on the 
following day caught up with the whaling fleet at anchor near 
Icy cape, at the southern edge of the great Arctic ice pack. The 
whaling fleet had been at anchor for 19 days, waiting lor the ice 
to open. The Bear lay there for 14 days longer, waiting for an 
opportunity to get farther north. Parties from point Barrow, 
who came down the coast for their mail, reported that the past 
■wdnter had not been very cold, the lowest temperature being 30° 
below zero. Giving up all expectation of getting farther north, 
young ice forming oil the sea and on the rigging of the vessel, 
the captain concluded to turn southward, which he did on 
August 22. The following day a shoal of walrus was sighted 
several miles away, and hunting parties were sent out and secured 
10 of them. Picking up the walrus, the vessel continued south- 
i\'ard, calling at point Hope the next day and reaching the rein- 
deer station August 27. Two days were spent in securing requisi- 
tions and finishing up the business of the year. On September 
1 the steamer, while near St. Michael, took on board 16 desti- 
tute miners from the Yukon region. On the evening of Septem- 
ber 4 the vessel anchored off the St. Lawrence island village. 
The evening was spent in closing up the season’s business at the 
station. Requisitions were made out for another year’s supplies, 
last letters were received, urewells were spoken, and Mr and 
Mrs Gamlffe were again cut off from all communication with the 
outside world for another year. At 4 a. m. on September 5 tlie 
Bear was again under way. September 6 St. Matthew and 
Hall islands were }>assed, and on the 7th anclior was droi>ped 
at St. Paul island, where on the 8th a landing was made for a 
few hours. On Sei)tember 9 a similar landing was made at St. 
George island, and at noon on September 11 anchor was dropped 
in Dutch harbor, Unalaska, closing the Arctic cruise of 1895. 


32 


SCOPE AND VALVE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


THE SCOPE AND VALUE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS^ 
By General A. W. Greely 

In a brief twenty minutes one can touch only in a desultory 
wa}’’ on this great topic that engages the thought and attention 
of so many famous members of the Geogra])hical Congress, yet 
a somewhat general outline of the scope and value of Arctic ex- 
ploration may not he amiss. 

This, however, is neither time nor place to present in detail 
those phases of Arctic exploration that appeal so strongly to the 
popular fancy. If one would gain an adequate idea of the true 
aspects of such voyaging, he must turn to the original journals, 
penned in the great White North by brave men whose “ purpose 
held to sail beyond the sunset.’’ 

In these volumes will be found tales of ships beset not only 
months, but years ; of ice packs and ice fields of extent, thick- 
ness, and mass so enormous that description conveys no just 
idea ; of boat journeys where constant watchfulness alone pre- 
vented instant death by drifting bergs or commingling ice floes ; 
of land marches when exhausted humanity staggered along, 
leaving traces of blood on snow or rock ; of sledge journeys over 
chaotic masses of ice, when humble heroes, straining at the drag- 
ropes, struggled on because the failure of one compromised the 
safety of all ; of solitude and monotony, terrible in the weeks of 
constant polar sunlight, but almost unsettling the reason in the 
months of continuous Arctic darkness ; of silence awful at all 
times, but made }mt more startling by astounding i^henomena 
that appeal noiselessly to the eye ; of darkness so continuous 
and intense that the unsettled mind is driven to wonder whether 
the ordinary course of nature will bring back the sun, or whether 
the world has been cast out of its orbit in the planetary universe 
into new conditions ; of cold so intense that any exposure is fol- 
lowed by instant freezing; of monotonous surroundings that 
threaten with time to unsettle the reason ; of deprivations wast- 

* Address delivered before the Sixth International Geographical Con- 
gress, London, at the Polar Session, July 29, 1895. 


SCOPE AND VALUE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


83 


ing the body, and so impairing tlie mind ; of failure in all things, 
not only of food, fuel, clothing, and shelter, for Arctic service 
foreshadows such contingencies, but the bitter failure of plans 
and aspirations, which brings almost inevitable despair in its 
train. 

Failure of all things, did I say ? Nay ; failure, be it admitted, 
of all the ph}^sical accessories of conceived and accomplished 
action, hut not failure in the higher and more essential attri- 
butes — not of the mental and moral qualities that are the foun- 
dation of fortitude, fidelity, and honor. Failure in this latter 
respect has been so rare in Arctic service as to justly make such 
offender a byword and scorn to his fellow-laborers and suc- 
cessors. 

Patience, courage, fortitude, foresight, self-reliance, helpful- 
ness — these grand characteristics of developed humanity every- 
where, but which we are inclined to claim as special endowments 
of the Caucasian race — find ample expression in the detailed 
history of Arctic exploration. If one seeks to learn to what ex- 
tent man’s determination and effort dominate even the most 
adverse environment, the simple narratives of Arctic exploration 
will not fail to furnish striking examples. 

There is a ^\it^espread impression that all Arctic voyages have 
been made for practically the same general purpose, whereas 
polar research has passed through three distinctive phases : First, 
for strictly commercial purposes in connection with trade to the 
Indies ; second, for advancement of geographical knowledge, 
and, third, for scientific investigations connected with physical 
sciences. 

Commercial interests dictated the grand series of vo}^ages 
wherein England, competing with Spain from the period of the 
ventures of the Cabots to the discoveries of Baffin, sought for a 
short route to the Indies across the pole or by a northwest pas- 
sage. As the futility of efforts by these routes became more or 
less aj>parent, and as the naval strength of Spain and Portugal 
ensured their continued monopoly of the growing and valuable 
trade of the Orient, the attention of England was turned in sheer 
desperation to the northeast ])assage as possibly offering a com- 
]>eting route. While this quest j)roved impracticable for the 
sailing ships of the sixteenth century, yet its prosecution inured 
to the great financial advantage of England through the estah- 


34 


SCOPE AND VALUE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


lishmenttliereby of intimate and exclusive commercial relations 
with the growing and hitherto inaccessible empire of Russia. 

The renewal of the true spirit of geographical exploration in 
the early part of the present century gave rise to a series of un- 
paralleled voyages in search of the northwest })assage, which re- 
sulted in the most splended geographical achievements of the 
century. These voj^ages were not splended alone from the defi- 
nite results attained, nor from the almost sui)erhuman efforts 
that ensured success, but also from the lofty spirit of endeavor 
and adventure that inspired the actors. The men wdio strove 
therein were lured by no hope of gain, influenced by no spirit 
of conquest, but were moved solely by the belief that man should 
know even the most desolate regions of his abiding place, the 
earth, and the determination that the Anglo-Saxon should do 
his part. 

Franklin said : “Arctic discoveiy has been fostered from mo- 
tives as disinterested as they are enlightened ; not from any 
prospect of immediate benefit, but from a steady view to the 
acquirement of useful knowledge and the extension of the bounds 
of science, and its contributions to natural history and science 
have excited a general interest. The loss of life in the i)rosecu- 
tion of these discoveries does not exceed the average deaths in 
the same population at home.” Parry adds : “ Such enterprises, 
so disinterested as well as useful in their object, do honor even 
when they fail. They cannot but excite the admiration of every 
liberal mind.” 

Of Chancellor’s voyage to the northeast Milton said : “ The 
discovery of Russia by the northern ocean . . . might have 

seemed an enterprise almost heroic if any higher end than exces- 
sive love of gain and traffic had animated the design.” Modern 
critics except from dispraise the gallant men who in this centuiy 
have given their lives from no sordid motive, and so merit Milton’s 
full praise. 

If not all, certainly some of these arctics have been animated 
with the noble thought of the poet : 

And this gray spirit yearning in desire 
To follow knowledge like a shining star 
Beyond the utmost bound of human thought. 

Suffice it is to say, for geographic research, that it has remained 
for the nineteenth century, with its wealth of industrial inven- 


SCOPE AND VALUE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


35 


tioiis and store of indomitable energy, to make the northwest 
and northeast passages, to outline the northern coast of America, 
and to discover the archipelagoes and islands situated poleward 
from the three continents of the northern hemisphere. 

Hudson’s voyage to the Greenland sea, in 1607, was of vast 
industrial and commercial importance, for his discovery and 
reports of the incredible number of walruses and whales that 
frequented these seas gave rise to the Spitzbergen whale fishery. 

The voyage of Poole for walruses and exploration, in 1610, 
was followed by the establishment of the whale fishery by Edge 
in the following year. Enterprising Holland sent its ships in 
1613, later bringing in its train whalers from Bremen, France, 
and other maritime centers. The whale fishery, as the most 
important of Arctic^industries, from which Holland alone drew 
from the Spitzbergen seas in one hundred and ten years, 1679- 
lf78, products valued at about $90,000,000, merits at least our 
brief attention. 

Grad writes : “ The Dutch sailors saw in Spitzbergen wateTs 
great whales in immense numbers, whose calch would be a 
source of apparently inexhaustible riches. For two centuries 
fleets of whalers frequented its seas. The rush to the gold-bear- 
ing placers of California and the mines of Australia afforded in 
our day the only examples at all comparable to the host of men 
attracted by the northern fishery.” 

Scoresby says: “ In a short time (whaling) proved the most 
lucrative and the most important branch of national commerce 
which had ever been offered to man.” This emphatic statement 
is devoid of exaggeration in the slightest degree. Scoresby gives, 
year by year, the products of the Dutch whale fishery in the 
Arctic seas from 1668 to 1778, which aggregate in value over 
$100,000,000. When it is known that Scoresl)y himself caught 
in thirty voyages fish to the value of $1,000,000, it will not be 
considered extravagant to place the products of the British 
whale fishery at $250,000,000. Starbuck gives the ])roduct of 
the American whale fisliery from 1804 to 1877 as $332,000,000, 
making the aggregate of three nations, America, England, and 
Holland, more than $680,000,000. How far this amount should 
be increased on account of .seal, walrus, and other strictly Arctic 
sea game need not be considered, but Norwegian and Bussian 
fishers have successfully exploited these sources for the past 
century. 


36 


SCOPE AED VALCE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATlOyS 


The visit of Laikoff to the New Siberian islands added eventu- 
ally a wealth of fossil ivory to Siberian trade that was onl}'’ 
second in value to the extraordinary stock of furs that grew out 
of the explorations of the Arctic valley of the Kolinia by Rus- 
sian hunters. From Hudson’s voyage to the bay of his name 
are attributable the initiation and development of the extremely 
valuable fur trade of the Hudson Bay Company. Bering failed 
to outline the definite geographic relations of the contiguous 
shores of Asia and America, but his voyages directl}’^ resulted in 
the very extensive sea and land fur trade which has proved so 
profitable through a century and a half. 

Altogether, it may be assumed that in a little over two centu- 
ries the Arctic regions have furnished to the civilized world pro- 
ducts aggregating twelve hundred millions^of dollars in value. 

Norshoulditbe inferred that commercial ends, scientific knowl- 
edge, or the glory of effort crystallized in accomplishment have 
alone turned man to the j^olar regions. The altruistic spirit of 
Egede lavished its wealth of effort in the turning of the Greenland 
Eskimo to Christianity and civilization, and it enkindled the 
flame of Christian endeavor that Crantz and the Moravian breth- 
ren kept alive during the critical phases of Greenland’s history. 
As Cowper says ; 

See Germany send forth 

Her sons to pour it on tlie fartliest north. 

Fired with a zeal j>eculiar, they defy 
The rage and rigor of a polar sky 
And plant successfully sweet Sharon’s rose 
On icy plains and in eternal snows. 

In recent days Great Britain has had its Duncan, France its 
Petitot, and the United .States its Jackson, Avhose evangelizing 
labors, acting through the more successful method — that of in- 
culcating civilization and helpfulness — are a ]>art of the glory of 
this time. The residence of Holm among the east Greenland 
natives and of Peart' with the Etah Eskimo have, it is to be hoi)ed, 
not been fruitless along these lines and should stimulate human 
sympathy for these dwellers on the northern edge of the world. 
Evert' lover of mankind will rejoice that Denmark, with the 
Christian solicitude that has always marked its polic}' towards 
the Greenlanders, has extended its unprofitable trade relations 
to east Greenland and established a missionary station at Ang- 
inagsalik for the benefit of the natives. May we not hope that 


SCOPE AND VALIE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


37 


some religious association may likewise plant the seeds of civil- 
ization and Christianity amon'g the Cape York Eskimo? 

There is neither intent nor time to worthily eulogize the deeds 
of living Arctic men, nor even to stimulate the eager rising youth 
who shall outdo all that has gone before ; rather would this brief 
word add a leaf of laui’el to the crowned dead whose Arctic fame 
forms part of each nation’s historic heritage — hallowed for the 
j)ast, priceless for the present, indispensable for successful fu- 
turity. 

Shall I name the soldiers or sailors, the explorers or scientists, 
the trader or the whaler? Rather all, since science knows neither 
station nor profession, neither dialect nor nationality. 

In the roll-call of the dead Austria-Hungary answers with 
’\Ve}"precht, whose greatest fame will ever be associated with the 
establishment of the international })olar stations. 

Denmark follows, equally at home in Ainerican, Asiatic, or Eu- 
ropean waters, through Munk and Hamke, Jan Mayen and Vitus 
Bering. 

Then France wdth De la Croyere, Pages, Blosseville, Fabre, 
Ctaimard, Marmier, Martins, and Bellot, the last a name ever 
grateful to English ears. 

Germany has generously loaned her talent to insure success 
Avherever sound and important scientific work is to be done. 
Baer, Bessell, Petermann, and Steller are Avortny successors to 
Frederick Martens, of the seventeenth century — men and Avork 
of Avhich any nation may be proud. 

Holland, in Barents, Nay, Tetgales, Rip, and Heemskerck, pre- 
sents a roll of honor Avell in keeping Avith the notable Avork of 
the thousands of Dutch Avhalers that exploited the Spitzbergen 
seas. 

The Italian contingent, from the Zeni of the fourteenth cen- 
tury through the Cabots toBoveof our OAvn day, maintain here, 
as elseAvhere, their geographic standing. 

Norwegian Othere set in the ninth century the ])ioneer standard 
of Arctic ex[)loration, Avhich later, combined Avith the labor of 
exploiting the northern seas, has Mattilas, Carlsen, Tol)iesen, and 
a score of others as Avorthy successors. 

Russia finds the Arctic problem a domestic ([uestion, and from 
the time of Peter tlie Great to today has done an amount of Avork 
not generally ai)preciated or known. 'I’he Laptietts and Desh- 
neff, Tchirikof, and IJakoff’, Anjou and Wrangell, Kotzebue and 


38 


SCOPE AND VALVE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


Liitke, Pachtussof, Krusenstern and Zivolka, stand forth in the 
annals of the world. 

In Hedenstrdin and Torrell Sweden finds examples that have 
borne such abundant fruit in the late active labors of her en- 
thusiastic sons. 

Once it was said that the almighty dollar was the object and 
end of American endeavor, but when American treasure — not by 
the millions but b}'’ the billions — was poured out and lives by 
the hundreds of thousands were joyfully given for an idea tlie 
men of the new world rose to a higher place in Euroj)ean esti- 
mation. 

A fellow-townsman of mine was a petty officer under Sir John 
Franklin, and among the hundreds engaged in tlie Franklin 
search none had a more altruistic and generous spirit than the 
American Elisha Kent Kane. Hayes left no danger undared to 
reach his “ Open Polar Sea.” Rodgers dared all, in Arctic ice as 
in the War for the Union. De Long and Ambler knew how to 
die, but not how to desert a helpless comrade. Hall followed the 
Arctic sledge to his veiy death. Lockwood, whose personal toil 
and suffering accomplished the farthest north and set the goal 
beyond which some more fortunate rival will soon pass, met 
with fortitude and sweetness the harsh fate which debarred the 
world from placing its laurel wreath save on his grave. 

I can scarcely say aught of British effort in a field that has 
been peculiarly England’s for the past three centuries. And 
how, among her innumerable Arctic dead, shall I single out 
representatives, worthy exam piers of British courage and effort? 
Like Macbeth’s kings, the line stretches out to crack of doom. 

Great were the daring navigators of the sixteenth and seven- 
teenth centuries — Chancellor and Davis and Frobisher, Hudson 
and Waymouth, Bylot and Baffin ; but were they greater than in 
their way were Cook, Hearne, and Mackenzie in the eighteenth ? 

And when we come to their worthy compeers of this century, 
there is barely room for the names of these daring spirits. Here 
is Britain’s unequaled roll : 

Austin, Back, Beechey, Buchan, Clavering, Collinson, Crozier, 
Forsyth, Goodsir, Inglefield, Kellett, Kennedy, Lefroy, Lyon, 
McClure, Maguire. Mecham, Moore, the immortal Nelson, Os- 
born, Penny, Pirn, Rae, Richardson, James C. Ross. Jolm Ross. 
Sabine, Saunders, Scoresby, father and son ; Simpson, and 
Stewart. 


SCOPE AND VALVE OF ARCTIC EXPLORATIONS 


39 


Close communion in spirit and thought with their recorded 
labors for many years has made for me many friends among the 
great Arctic dead, and so particularly segregates in my mind, from 
this alphabetical list, the twin Arctic compeers, Franklin and 
Parry, sls facile princeps in this great company. 

But the history of these men is inextricably interwoven with 
the wonderful development of the British Empire, and their 
deeds forever abide to the glory of the English-speaking race. 

And of the Arctic dead of Europe, Asia, and America, from 
the earliest Othere of Norway and the Zeni of Italy to the latest 
fallen in Sweden, Nordenskiold the younger, promising son of 
his distinguished father, there may well be quoted the words of 
an American soldier : 

On Fame’s eternal camping ground 
Their silent tents are spread, 

And Glory guards with solemn round 
The bivouac of the dead. 

Storm-stayed and ice-beset no longer, their dust awaits the 
change and fate ordained by God’s eternal laws. 

The end they sought, the work they wrought, the courage and 
devotion they showed should stand as ideals and patterns for 
the men of the future in the accomplishment of the great Arctic 
work which it shall be their good fortune to undertake. 

But now we look again to England to retake its former place 
in Arctic research. Shall we look in vain ? I believe not. ' 

Let her remember that the beginning of the end will have 
come for the ever extending and ever developing British power 
when this insular people would ever consent, for any sum in 
pounds and pence, that the Arctic relics of Greenwich should 
be scattered, or that there should ever be removed from West- 
minster Abl)ey, rich with its clustering memories and gathered 
treasures of a thousand years, the tribute of genius to heroism, 
of England’s poet laureate to its Arctic dead. 

Well has it been for Britain that hundreds of its youth have 
imbibed together learning and patriotism, love of the beautiful 
and admiration for glory, while translating into classic verse 
these immortal words : 

N(jt here. Tlie white north lias tliy bones, and thou. 

Heroic sailor .soul. 

Art passing on thine hapjtier voyage now 
Towards no earthly pole. 


40 


OBITUARY— GEOGliAPIIIC LITER A TIRE 


OBITUARY 

Dr Robert Brown, the distinguished botanical geographer, died Octo- 
ber 20. He was in command of the Vancouver island exj)loration of 1804 
and was in the Whymper West Greenland expedition of 1867, his glacial 
and natural history work attracting much attention. His “Manual of 
Botany” is his best work, although it is less widely known than are his 
“Peoples of the World,” “Countries of the World,” “Our Earth and 
its Story,” “Africa,” and “ Science for All,” which aggregate 24 volumes. 

Admiral R. B. Pearse, R. N., died in November. He served as mate in 
H. M. S. Resolute, 1850-’51, and made a sledge journey of 208 miles, from 
Griffith to Bathurst island, during which he and one of his men were 
badly frozen. He rendered distinguished service to his country during 
the Chinese war of 1858-’60. 

Henry Seebohm, the eminent ornithologist, died November 20. His 
investigations carried him over the greater part of the world. Two of his 
most interesting works, “ Siberia in flurope ” and “ Siberia in Asia,” were 
the outcome of his bird trips to the Lower Petchora in 1875 and the 
Yenisei in 1877, his ship being wrecked on the latter occasion. Seebohm’s 
great works are the “ History of British Birds,” “ Geographical Distribu- 
tion of Plovers,” and “ Birds of Japan.” 

Rear Admiral Shufeldt, U. S. N., who died November 7, has left a record 
of unusual brilliancy. His most important geogra^ihical work was done 
while he was in command of the Tehuantepec and Nicaragua surveying 
expeditions. His reports, valuable documents illustrated by plates and 
maps, were printed by the Government in 1872 and 1874. The greatest 
service that Shufeldt rendered to .America, and, it may be added, to the 
world in general, was the negotiation, in 1882, of the treaty by which 
Korea was thrown open to tlie commerce of the United States, first of all 
nations. 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 

Elemeniar;/ Physical Geofimphy. By Ralph S. Tarr, Assistant Professor of 

Dynamic Geology and Physical Geography at Cornell University. Pp. 

488, with maps and 267 illustrations. New York : Alacmillan & Co. 

1895. ?1.40. 

This book appears well adapted to serve as a text-book of physical 
geography. It will commend itself by its perspicuous style to the favor- 
able attention of those who may desire information concerning the most 
recent developments in this important field, without the labor of examin- 
ing ptirely professional papers, and who do not care to depend on irre- 
sponsible newspaper reports. The chapters devoted to geology are, as 
might be e.xpected, unexceiJtionable. In its treatment of ocean currents,. 


GEO GRAPHIC LI TER A TURE 


41 


however, the work is open to criticism. With regard to the temperature 
and wind theories the author fails to make himself clear. He also omits 
^iny explanation of the important part the salts play in the matter of 
ocean currents, and he entirely ignores the Yucatan channel current, the 
strongest one in existence. The general appearance of the book is excel- 
lent. The illustrations, with but few exceptions (as, for example, that of 
mount Vesuvius, on page 376), are very good and the price is exceed- 
ingly reasonable. 

The Gold Diggings of Cape Horn: A Study of Life in Tierra del Fuego and 
Patagonia. By John R. Spears. Pp. 319, with illustrations. New 
York : G. P. Putnam’s Sons. 1895. 

So few books have been written about the terra incognita between cape 
Horn and the straits of Magellan that a new one by so well known an 
author as Mr John R. Spears will be heartily welcomed. It is written 
in the author’s usual quaint style, with a vein of humor running all the 
way throiigh; and while it does not claim to be a record of personal e.x- 
ploration like Beerbohm’s or Lady Brassey’s, but merely a collection of 
newspaper sketches written up at.homefrom data gleaned during a cruise 
around the edges, it is full of valuable information. While the author’s 
ideas of the gold diggings are a trifle too sanguine, his account of the Ona, 
Yahgan, Tehuelche, Alaculoof, and other Indians, as well as of the mis- 
sionaries who are tr}dng in vain to tame them, of the famous Welsh 
colony on Chubut river, of the general resources, and also of the birds, 
beasts, and reptiles, of lands at thetii^ end of the hemisphere is extremely 
interesting. 

*Stan ford’s Compendium of Geography and Travel {new series). Africa. 
Volume II, South A frica. By A. H. Keane, F. R. G. S., etc. Pp. 671, 
with 11 maps and 92 illu.strations. London : Edward Stanford. 1895. 
American agents, J. B. Lippincott Co., Philadelphia. $4.50. 

This admirable volume, fresh from the press, gives an authentic, “up 
to date ” account of the geography, history, and political complexion of 
South Africa. It is illustrated by nearly 100 admirably chosen plates and 
text figures and a dozen excellent colored maps. Perhaps no part of the 
world has ever undergone so rapid and fundamental a metamorphosis as 
has South Africa “ since the leading powers resolved, a few years ago, to 
transform this continent to a political dependency of Europe.’’ “ Occur- 
rences of far-reaching consequence,” says the author, “ have followed in 
«uch swift succession that in the preparation of this work the chief dilli- 
culty has been to keej) i)ace with the shifting scenes. In some instances 
many carefully prepared pages have had to he greatly modified, and even 
rewritten, owing to the unexpected turn taken by events in vanous parts 
of the continent.” ^Madagascar, ^Mauritius, and other islands of the 
Indian ocean are included in the book, and the author adopts the very 
modern view of an “ Indo-African continent ” connecting South Africa 
through Madagas(!ar with the Indian peninsula. While the work^deals 
mainly, as wouhl be expected, with the more purely geograi)hic and 


42 


GEOGRAPHIC LIT ERA TURE 


political questions, it still bestows some attention on the fauna and flora, 
and it would have been well if these subjects had been referred to some 
of the eminent British naturalists who are so well qualified to speak on 
these topics. 

National Geographic Monographs, published under the auspices of the 
National Geographic Society. Pp. .S36, illustrated. New York : 
American Book Co. 1895. $1.40. 

The first series, comprising Nos. 1-10, ends with December. It consists- 
of memoirs by Powell, Shaler, Russell, Willis, Diller, Davis, Gilbert, and 
Hayes on geographic topics of primary importance. All geographers will 
find much that is interesting and instructive in these memoirs, but to- 
American teachers and students they will be especially valuable. They 
have been published by the American Book Company in the hope that 
memoirs by authors ranking among the most eminent of American scien- 
tists would by their intrinsic worth and scientific interest advance the- 
cause of higher education in the United States. 

I'ihet. Notes on the Ethnology of Tibet. Based on Collections in the 
United States National Museum. By W. W. Rockhill. Report of United 
States National IMuseum for 189.3. Pp. 665-747, pis. 1-52. Washingtoiir 
1895. 

Readers of these interesting pages will be gratified that so extensive a, 
collection from this comparatively unknown country has been made by 
the National IMuseum. It is fortunate that the description of the different 
objects has fallen into the hands of one so competent by acquirements and 
experience as Mr Rockhill. 

Chili. Republique de Chili. Cartes commerciales, physiques, etc. Par 
F. Bianconi. Librairie Chaix. Paris, 1895. 

A valuable addition to the Chaix series, giving the latest information 
regarding the agricultural and mineral resources, commerce, railways,, 
etc., of Chili, with a map, 1:2,500,000, embodying the latest surveys. 

Special Consular Reports, Vol. 12 — Highways of Commerce. The ocean- 
lines, railways, canals, and other trade routes of foreign countries. 
Washington, 1895. Pp. 763, with 9 maps. 

A timely publication, whose value is materially increased by a nundier 
of ma])s, of which the most important sliow the railways of IMexico, Si- 
beria, Natal, and India. Some of the data, as seems unavoidable in Gov- 
ernment publications, are nearly two years old. The railway mileage of 
the world on December 31, 1894, was 423,923, of which 189,576 were in the 
TTuited States. At the end of 1892 tlie mileage of the princijial countries 
and the average cost per mile as given by the German Minister of Publie 
Works were as follows : United States, 174,747 miles, $.59,300; Germany, 
27,451 miles, $95,200; France, 24,014 miles, $131,900; Great Britain and 
Ireland, 20,321 miles, $131,000; Russia, 19,622 mile.s, $90,400; Austria- 
Hungary, 17,621 miles, $95,400 ; Canada and other British American prov- 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATLRE 


43 


inoes, 14,866 miles, 857,600; Italy; 8,496 miles, 8114,600; Argentine Re- 
public, 8,161 miles ; Mexico, 6,624 miles ; Brazil, 6,388 miles ; Spain, 6,169 
miles; Belgium, 3,379 miles, 8131,000. 

The information concerning the railways of South and Central Africa 
is of especial interest, although great progress has been made in the ex- 
tension of transportation lines during the past year. The value of the 
report is enhanced by the insertion of the well known map of the world 
issued by the Hj'drographic Office of the United States Navy Department 
in June, 1891, which shows tracks of full-powered steam vessels, with dis- 
tances, and probably contains a larger amount of information on this 
subject than can be found elsewhere within an equally limited space. Its 
presentation on the map in both graphic and tabular form increases its 
usefulness. The distances between different ports on the east and west 
coasts of North and South America and the shores of the gulf of Mexico 
and Caribbean sea are also shown. The volume contains a full topical 
index. 


EXECUTIVE REPORTS 

The annual reports of the cabinet officers, recently transmitted 
by the President to Congress, contain some items of geographic 
interest. 

War Depart.mext. — The Secretary of War states that since 1879 
829,500,000 has been appropriated for the improvement of the Mississipi^i 
river, of which 88,400,000 has been directly applied to general improve- 
ments to aid navigation. The greater jmrt of this amount has been spent 
on two reaches of the river, each 20 miles long, one situated 80 miles above 
Memphis and the other 80 miles above Vicksburg. The result has only 
been to increase the depth of the river at low water by 18 inches. For 
the improvement of the IMissouri river, which for years has had practi- 
cally no navigation, 88,900,000 has been appropriated. The Secretary 
questions the propriety of further appropriations for this river. 

With regard to the propo.sed Chicago drainage canal, a board of engi- 
neer officers state that the abstraction of 10,000 cubic feet of water ]ier 
second from lake Michigan will lower the level of all the great lakes ex- 
cept Superior, and reduce the navigable capacity of all harbors and shal- 
lows, but to what extent cannot be foretold at this time. 

The Yellowstone National Park has now 170 miles of good highways, 
permitting easy acce.ss from the railways to the principal points of interest. 
It is proposed that 25 miles of additional roads, now impassable for ve- 
hicles, be opened, which will complete the general scheme of highways. 

Tlie .\pache Indian jirisoners, comprising about 70 families, have been 
removed to the Fort Sill reservation, which is being gradually brought to 
a self-sustaining basis. 

The defensele.‘<s coinlition of the principal harbors is dwelt upon and 
the nece.ssity of liberal aj)p ropriations strongly ju-esented. 


44 


GEOGRAPHIC LITER A TURE 


Navy Depaiitmext — Surgeon General. — Among valuable special reports 
are those of Surg. Gen. Tryon, on “The Relation of Naval Architecture 
to projjer Sanitation; Dr H. G. Beyer, on “Normal Growth under the 
Influence of Exercise,” and Dr E. K. Stitt, on “The Medical Aspect of 
tlie Nicaraguan Canal.”' Dr Stitt believes that while the construction of 
the canal would temporarily increa.se the prevailing malarial diseases, it 
would ultimately remove the most potent pestilential forces through 
changes in swamps and in the level of lake Nicaragua. 

Po.sT Office Departmext. — The Postmaster General states that the 
revenue of his department for the year lS94-’95 was in round numVjers 
$77,090,000, and that the expenditures amounted to $87,000,000. ^lail 
service has been established on electric and cable lines in Boston, Brooklyn, 
Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, and St. Louis. The net increa.se in 
the number of po.st-offices is 429, principally in Oklahoma, Indian Terri- 
tory, and Virginia. Cape Colony has joined the postal union, leaving 
Korea, China, and the Orange Free State the only civilized nations not 
embraced therein. 

Departme.xp of the Ixterior. — The Secretary of the Interior covers in 
his report the operations of many bureaus, of which the more important 
are treated under the following heads : 

Patent Office.— There were 3(3,972 applications for patents, 20,465 pat- 
ents were granted, 12,906 expired, and .3,208 were forfeited for nonpay- 
ment of fees. 

Indian Bureau. — There are 161 Indian reservations, on which the prob- 
lem of making tbe ahiorigines self-supporting is progressing with more or 
less rapidity. For schools alone $2,060,695 was appropriated, and nearly 
$7,000,000 for payment for lands and other treaty obligations. The school 
pupils have increa.^ed by 1,417 during the year. The total enrollment 
was 23,036, of whom 4,673 are in industrial training schools. Lands have 
been patented to 6,851 Indians during the year. 

Generfd Land Office. — Of public lands there have been disposed of to 
Indians 42,000 acres; by sale, 417,000; miscellaneous entries, 7,947,000. 
There remain undisposed of 599,000,000 acres, exclusive of Alaska. The 
vacant public lands are largely in the arid regions, and from 8 to 25 per 
cent, according to various e.stimates, may ultimately be cultivated by irri- 
gation. The Laud Commi.ssioner recommends the establishment of forest 
re.ser vat ions, and that legislation be enacted relative to public timber, to 
the surveying of public lands through the Geological Survey, and to the 
estiiblishment of a district land office in Alaska. 

Bureau of Educ'Uion. — The number of pupils enrolled in schools in 1894 
was 15,5.30,000, or 22.9 per cent of the entire population. 

yationul Parka and Forest Resermtions. — There are si.xteen reservations, 
with a total area of 16,325,000 acres, embracing parts of Arizona, Cali- 
fornia, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington. The more im- 
portant Yellowstone, A^osemite, and Sequoia parks are protected b\' mili- 
tary guards. 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


45 


Geological Surven . — The operations of this important bureau are left for 
review until the publication of the full report of the Director of the Surve}'. 

Censuf !. — The cost of the Eleventh Census to June 30, 1895, was $10,- 
531,141. ’ Of 25 volumes, with 22,000 pages, all are printed or in })ress, 
except parts of volumes on Population and Vital Statistics. 

IxTER-STATE COMMERCE COMMISSION. — The total number of miles of rail- 
way in the United States on June 30, 1894, was 178,708, an increase of 
2,247 miles in twelve months. Miles of line per 100 square miles of ter- 
ritory, 6.02 ; per 10,000 inhabitants, 20.3(5. Stock capital, $4,834,075,6.59 ; 
funded debt, $5,356,.583,019 ; other indebtedness, $605,815,135; total, 
$10,796,473,813, or $62,951 per mile. Passenger receipts in 1893-’94, 
$285,349,558; freight receipts,- $699,490,913 ; other income, $231,338,131; 
total, $1,216,178,602. Expenditures, including fixed charges, $1,160,422,- 
632. Number of passengers carried, 540,688,199; average number per 
train, 44; average journey per passenger, 26.43 miles. 


NEW MAPS 

Western Hemisphere Charts, published by the Hydrographic Office, United 
States Navy, July-December, 1895, with size, scale in inches, and price. 

Great Lakes, No. 1462, Lake Ontario, Toronto Harbor, 22.6 x 27.5 ; M. = 
3.377 ; $0.50. No. 1469, Lake Huron, Georgian Bay, Cabot Head to 
Boucher Point, 29.6 X 39.7 ; M.-=0.75; $1.00. No. 1475, Lake IMichigan, 
24.4 X. 34. 5; D. Lat. =5.91; $0.75. No. 1477, Lakes Erie and Ontario, 
23.4x23.7 ; D. Lat. =5.80; $0.75. E, The Great Lakes, Index to Coast, 
Special and Harbor Charts, 9x 15.2; D. Long. =0.6; $0.10. 

Mexico, No. 1494, San Ignacio Lagoon, 26.3 .x 37 ; M. = 1.5; $0.75. 
Bermuda, No. 1495, Bermuda and Great Sound, including Grass\^ and 
Port Royal Bays and Hamilton Harbor, 21 x 25.75; M. =4.0; $0.50. 

Xiearagua, No. 1510, Entrance to Pearl Cay, 16.6x22.6; M. =4.0; 
$0.50. No. 1517, Approaches to Pearl Cay Lagoon, with plans of Great 
and Little Corn Islands, 24.0 .x 37.4 ; M. = 1.0 ; $0.75. 

Guiana, No. 1512, Corentyn River, Approaches to Nickerie River, 16.5 x 
20.7; :\L = 4.0; $0.25. 

Guiana, No. 1513, Entrance to Corentyn River, 7.1 x 9.4; M. = 0.5, and 
Entrance to tlie Coppename and Sarainacca Rivers, 7.1 x 9.4 ; M. = 0.25 ; 
.$0.25. 

Argentina, No. 1515, Port San Julian, 14.3 x 18.6 ; M. = 2.0 ; $0.25. No. 
1516, Port Santa Elena, 13x17.5; M. = 3.0; $0.25. No. 1518, Port San 
Antonio, 10.2 x 13.3; .M. = 1.0; $0.25. No. 1519, Rio Negro, 11.1 x 12.6; 
M. = 1.0; $0.2-5. No. 1521, San Bias Harbor, 13.1 x 14.8 ; M. = 1.0 ; $0.25. 

Brazil, No. 1520, Port Camamu, 21.2 x 30.4 ; M. = 2.0 ; $0.50. No. 1522, 
From Bahia to Ilheos .\nchorage, 28.5 .X 38.8 ; M. =0.25; $1.00. No. 1524, 
Port Tamandare, 9.7 x 11.4 ; 51. = 4.0; $0.25. 


40 


XATIOXAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY: 


PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 
SOCIETY, SESSION i 895-’96 

Special Meeting, October 11, lS9o. — President Hut>bard in the chair. Vice- 
l^resident Greely delivered an address on The Si.vth International Geo- 
graphical Congress, London, 1895. 

Special Meeting, October 25, 1895. — President Iluhhard in the chair. Mr 
Ernest Flagg, Architect of tlie new Corcoran Art Gallery and of the Wash- 
ington Episcopal Cathedral, read a paj)er, illustrated hy lantern slides, on 
The Development of the Mediteval Cathedral. 

Regular Meeting. Xovemberl, 1895. — Vice-President Gannett in the chair. 
Vice-President Ogden addressed the Society, giving a narrative of explo- 
rations on the isthmus of Darien. 

Special Meeting, Xovember 8, /^.95. — President Iluhhard in the chair. 
]\Iajor Alfred F. Sears, C. E., read a paper, illustrated hy lantern slides, 
on The Geographic Conditions that Create Great Commercial Centers. 

Regular Meeting, Xovember 15, 1895. — Vice-President Gannett in the 
chair. General topic : The H vdrography of the United States, divided as 
follows: Hydrographic Investigations, hy 5Ir F. II. >»ewell. Chief Hy- 
drographer, L". S. Geological Survey; The Work of the Weather Bureau 
relating to Hydrography, hy Prof. W. L. Moore, Chief of the Bureau ; 
Stream Measurements in the West, hy 5Ir A. P. Davis; Hydnjgraphic 
Studies in the .\ppalachian Area, hy Mr C. C. Bahh, and Hydrography 
of the Xavigiihle Waters, hy ]\Ir Marcus Baker. Each paper was illus- 
trated l)y maps and diagrams. 

Special Meeting, Xovember 22, 1895. — President Huhhard in the chair. 
5Ir E. L. Corthell, D. Sc., C. E., read a paper, illustrated by lantern slides, 
on The Tehuantepec Route. 

Regular Meeting, Xovember 29, i59.5. —President Hubbard in the chair. 
;Mr Marcus Baker read a paper on Alaska and her Boundary, illustrating 
his remarks hy a series of historical maps. The discussion that followed 
was participated in hy Hon. .1. R. Procter, Gen. A. W. Greely, and Dr 
AV. H. Dali. 

Special Meeting, December 6, 1895. — President Hubbard iu the chair. 
Mr C. M. Ffoulke read a paper on The Tapestry-Producing Nations, and 
exhibited a number of tyjjical i)ieces of tapestry from his valuable col- 
lection. 

Regular Meeting, December 1.3, 1895. — Vice-President Dabney in the 
chair. Dr C. Hart Merriam read a paper on The Life of the Desert, 
with special reference to the fauna of the desert regions of the United 
States. Dr ^lerriam illustrated his remarks hy means of a number of 
skins and of stuffed animals and birds; also hy lantern slides of animals 
and of desert scenery. 




ITS PROCEEDINGS 


47 


Special Meeting, December SO, ^<955.— President Hubbard in the chair. 
Admiral E. AV. Meade, U. S. N., delivered an address, illustrated by maps 
and lantern slides, on The Caribbean Sea: the Mediterranean of the 
AVestern \A'orld. 

Elections. — New members have been elected as follows : 

October 14. — AA’’alter C. Allen, Joseph A. Arnold, Gustav Ayres, Maj. 
Cbas. Bendire, U. S. A., Frederick Benjamin, John H. Brickenstein, 
Prof. J. F. Chamberlain, Henryk M. Chapman, Miss Josephine A. Clark, 
AA^. AV. Cheshire, Miss Virginia E. Dade, T. H. Davies, John T. Devine, 
Mrs A. G. Draper, AV. AA'^. Duffield, Jr., Prof. M. J. Elrod, Alaj. F. L. 
Evans, E. E. Ewell, Prof. D. C. Farr, Charles AV. Fisher, Mrs Alary E. 
Gilpin, Dr Geo. 0. Glavis, Capt. C. H. Gordon, U. S. A., Edward P. Hall, 
John H. Hinton, Aliss Alartha N. Hooper, Richard L. Howell, Ernest \ . 
Janson, Thos. Kirby, Prof. F. Lamson-Scribner, John E. Lyons, J. T. 
Alacey, AVm. J. Alarsh, Airs Cornelia N. Alason, Philip Alauro, Chief 
Engineer Fred. G. AIcKean, U. S. N., Airs Y. AV. Aliller, Airs V. A. Aloore, 
Prof. AVillis L. Aloore, Dr A. C. Patterson, Daniel A. Ray, Dr E. AAh 
Reisinger, N. H. Shea, Chas. AA^. Smiley, Capt. J. G. Sobral (Spanish 
Kavy), Dr A. C. True, Dr F. W. True, Dr J. Van Rensselaer, Aliss Alahel 
L. AA^hite, President B. L. AAdiitman, John C. AA'ilson, Hon. AVm. L. AVil- 
son, J. AA". AA'^itten. 

October So. — Edmund Becker, Airs Isabella' AI. Bittinger, AlercerD. Blon- 
del, Eugene C. Brown, O. B. Brown, Airs J. Alills Browne, Hon. AAhn. R. 
Castle (Hawaiian Alinister), James H. Crew, Surg. S. H. Dickson, U. S. N., 
Airs Alary Fuller, S. C. Gilman, Col. A. Heger, U. S. A., Airs Julia Hen- 
derson, E. C. How'land, AA''m. A. Hungerford, Col. D. L. Huntington, 
U. S. A., George H. Judd, Aliss Tessa L. Kelso, J. R. Alarshall, AAhn. H. 
AIcKnew, Airs L. R. Alessenger, Dr AA''. F. Alorsell. Thos. Nelson Page, 
Aliss Josephine Pickles, Airs Fannie AI. Reynolds, Rev. J. Havens Rich- 
ards, S. J., Albert N. Seip, Airs A. AI. Shaw, Aliss Juliet Solger, Baron 
Thielmann (German Ambassador), L. L. Thompson, Frank ATncent, Geo. 
AA’^. AA’’eber, H. A. AA'ierwille, Alonzo C. Yates. 

November 8. — Chas. B. Bailey, AA^m. H. Beck, B. AA'. Beebe, P. C. Claf- 
lin, Arthur J. Dillon, Aliss J. C. Donovan, George E. Emmons, Aliss 
Frances Graham French, Gen. L. P. Graham, U. S. A., H. A. Griswold, 
Aliss Alamie E. Hale, Dr Theo. G. Hoech, A. B. Hoen, Dr AA'm. H. 
Holmes, Henry AI. Hubbard, F. A. Kendall, AIi.«s Carrie AI. Lash, C. R. 
Richards, AAhn. P. Richards, C. E., Chas. J. Tilden, Homan D. AA'al- 
hridge, Daniel AA'ehster. 

November 18. — Chief Justice Edward F. Bingham, Capt. G. Rodney 
Burt, Mr Justice Shepard, John K. Souther. 

November SO. — Senor Jac<)ho Blanco, Prof. L. C. Glenn, Rev. Allen 
Hazcn, Alaj. A\'. P. Hu.xford, U. S. A., S. A. Aloreland, AA'alter F. Rogers, 
Elmer G. Runyan, James C. Spriggs, Jr., AVhn. P. Steam, Gen. Richard 
A'illafranca. 


48 


yOliTir AMERICAN NOTES 


December iJ.— Hon. C. B. Beach, ]\I. C., Dr J. L. M. Curry, Hon. C. E, 
Foss, ^I. C., Dr E. 31. Gallandet, Baron Beno von Herman (German Em- 
bassy), W. J. 3Iartin, 3Iaximilien de 3Ieck (Secretary, Russian Legation), 
Pak Yong Kin (Chai'ge d’Affaires Korean Legation), Sefior Don Edmundo 
J. Plaza (Mexican Legation), Dr J. L. Reeves, Rev. Prof. Rene de Saussure, 
Alexander de Somoft’ (Charge d’Affaires Russian Legation). 

The following delegates from The N.\tiox.\l Geogr.m’hic Society at- 
tended the Sixth International Geographical Congress, held in London in 
July last: General A. W. Greely, Assistant Secretary of State Rockhill, 
Miss E. R. Scidmore, 3Iiss Aileen Bell, 3Iiss Lilian Hayden, Lieut. Com- 
mander W. S. Cowles, IT. S. N., Lient. Everett Hayden, U. S. N., Cyrus 
C. Adams, and W. C. Whittemore. 


NORTH AMERICAN NOTES 

The convention between the United States and Great Britain to.provide 
the requisite topographical data to determine the lioundary between 
Alaska and British Columbia expired by limitation December 31. An- 
other commission will determine the location of the line. 

Gkeenland. The National Geographic Society welcomes back one of 
its members, Engineer R. E. Peary, U. S. Navy, from his perilous and 
terrible journey across Greenland. If he failed to surpass his own record 
of 18i)2 he paralleled it, thus emphasizing a success far beyond that of any 
other explorer of the inland ice. Ethnologists look contidently for impor- 
tant data relative to the Etah Eskimo, and American universities have 
profited largely by the natural history collections. 

Rhode Island. According to the state census of 1895 the population 
of the state is 384,758, as against 304,284 in 1885 and 345,506 by the fed- 
eral enumeration of 1890. Cities over 20,000 are as follows: Providence, 
145,472; Pawtucket, 32,577; Woonsocket, 24,468; Newport, 21,537, and 
AV'arwick, 21,168. The drift of migration is from agricultural districts to 
manufacturing centers. 

Florida. Palm Beach, the terminus of the Florida East Coast Railway, 
has been created a port of entry in connection with a line of steamers, 
which leaving in the afternoon reach Nassau the next morning, thus open- 
ing a new route, important both to commerce and tourists. 

Block Island. A land-locked liarbor, 1,600 acres in area, has been con- 
structed in the interior of Block island at a cost of §100,000. The channel 
to the Atlantic is 12 feet deep at low water and 300 feet Avide, with a break- 
water extending 600 feet into the sea. It is proposed to doulde the depth 
and width of the channel. 


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Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. S. N. 

Dr. Francis Brown, Union Theol. Seminary. 

Mr. E. h. Corthell, C. E., New York. ' 

Dr. Elliott Coues. 

Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
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Dr. Charles W. Dabney, Jr., .Assistant Secre- 
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Dr. Wm. H. Dali, Smithsonian Institution, 
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Dr. George Davidson, I’resident of the Geo- 
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^Ir. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Wm. M. Davis, Professor of Physical Geog- 
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Dr. David T. Day, Chief of the Div. of Mining 
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Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Hon. John W. Foster, e.v-.Secretary of ,State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Topographer, U. S. 
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Mr. G. K Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey, 
Pres, of the Geol. Society of Washington. 

Gen. A. W. Greel}', U. S. A., Chief Signal 
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Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
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Dr Mark W. Harrington, President of the Uni- 
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Lieut. Everett Hayden, U. vS. N., Secretary of 
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I ^Ir. Wm. II. Holmes. Dir. of the Dept, of An- 
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I Dr. Sheldon Jackson, U. S. Commissioner of 
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Prof. William Libbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
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Mr. John E. McGrath, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S. N. 

Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Mass. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Ornithologist and Mam- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John H. Mitchell, U. S. vS. 

Prof. W. L- Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. Frederick H. Newell, Chief Hydrographer 
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Mr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Lieut. Robert E. Peary, U. S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. S. 

Mr. William H. Pickering, Profe.ssor of Astron- 
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Major John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
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Prof. W. B. Powell, .Superintendent ot Schools, 
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Hon. John R. Procter, President of the U. S. 
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Mr. Israel C. Russell, Profe.ssor of Geology in 
the Universit}'^ of Michigan. 

Dr. N. S. Shaler, Profes.sor of Geology in Har- 
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Commander Charles D. Sigsbee, Hydrographer 
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Miss Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore. 

Commander Z. L Tanner, U. .S. N. 

Mr. Frank Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U. S. 
Geological .Survey. 

IMrs. Fannie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


Among the contents of forthcoming numbers will be articles, for 
the most part illustrated, on the Panama, Nicaragua, and T'ehuantepec 
routes ; on Venezuela, by Mr. W. \i. Curtis, late Chief of the Bureau of 
j the American Republics; on the Geography, Peo})le, and Resources of 
s Costa Rica, by General Richard Villafranca, Commissioner-General to 
I the Atlanta Ivxposition ; on S(^me Recent Explorations in the Foothills 
U of the Andes of Ecuador, by Mr. Mark B. Kerr; and on Some Physical 
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Entered at the Post-office in Washington, D. C., as •second-class mail matter. 


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FEBRUARY, 1896 


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YBJTEZUElJ^ : HER t^OVERNiMENT, ^EOPLE, |aND B0UNDARt/ - 

’ - -- william e. Curtis 


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THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

VoL. VII FEBRUARY, 1896 No. 2 


VENEZUELA; HER GOVERNMENT, PEOPLE, AND 
BOUNDARY 

MTlliam E. Curtis, 

Ex-Director of the Bureau of the American Republics 

Along the Spanish main, from Trinidad to the isthmus, is a 
mixture of Florida and Switzerland, where one can find 'wdthin 
the radius of a single day’s journey any climate or scene to suit 
his taste, from a tropical jungle swai'ining with tigers and ’gators 
to mountain crests crowned with eternal snow. The Andes and 
the Cordilleras, fonning a double spinal column for the continent, 
split and scatter and jump into the sea. At the very edge of the 
ocean, within view of passing vessels, are jreaks whose snow- 
capped summits-seem to hang in the air. •The Nevada de la Santa 
ISIarta, 17,500 feet high, affords one of the most majestic spectacles 
in ail nature. Tourists are always incredulous when the peak is 
pointed out to them, for it resemliles a hank of clouds, Imt they 
are finally compelled to admit the truth of geogra]>hy, for clouds 
do not stand transfixed in the sky, unchangealile and immovalile, 
like this phenomenon. 

Between these mountains and along the coast are narrow val- 
leys of luxurious troi)ical verdure and a rich soil — valleys which 
yield three harve.sts annually and are densely populated. Coffee, 
sugar, and chocolate are the staples of the lower region, called 
tierre calicntei hoi earth) ; corn, beans, and other ])roducts of the 
temperate zone are raised upon the mountain sides, and higher, 
seven or eight thousand feet above the level of the sea, am herds 
of goats and cattle. 


50 


VENEZUELA : 


The population of Venezuela is about two and one-half mill- 
ions, not including 260,000 Indians, and there are nine states, one 
federal district, and five territories. The country is still in a 
|)rimitive and com})aratively undeveloi)ed condition. Outside 
the principal cities it has made little or no progress since the yoke 
of Spain was thrown off, and the population is believed to Ije less 
than it was then. 

Agricultural and industrial development has been retarded by 
political revolutions and a lack of lalj)or and ca])ital, hut the 
])i’operty of foreigners who do not meddle with local affairs is sel- 
dom disturljed and the government offers lil^eral inducements 
for colonization and investment. IManufacturing estal.)lishments 
are almost unknown. There is little machinery in the country, 
and industry is generally carried on in the households and by 
the most primitive processes. There is an abundance of conven- 
ient water power, hut fuel is scarce and ex^jensive; therefore the 
future wealth of Venezuela, as well as her })resent prosi)erity, lies 
in the development of her agricultural resources, which are almost 
l)oundless, and her mineral deposits, which are among the richest 
and most accessible. Coffee is the great staple, and the product 
is unsurpassed. 

It has been the unhapjiy lot of Venezuela to have been the 
scene of almost constant warfare. There is not a country in 
the world whose history is more stained with blood. She is 
tlie Hungary, the Poland, of South America. There is scarcely 
a city or a settlement within the limits of the rei)uhlic which at 
some time or another has not suffered total or i)artial destruction, 
and scarcely a mountafti to]) from which some ])attlefield may 
not l3e seen. During colonial times Venezuela was cuffed and 
kicked about by Spain so that her peoi>le were in almost con- 
stant rebellion, and since her independence was estal)lished, three- 
([uarters of a century ago, her political leaders have ke})t her like 
an armed camp. Most of her rulers have l)een elected l>y l)ullets 
and bayonets instead of by ballots, and most of her great men 
have died in exile, to have their l)ones brought home in after 
years with tremendous honors and buried under monuments of 
marble and statues of hronz(\ 

The president of Venezuela is assisted in the performance of 
his duties by a cabinet of eight memljers. He receives a salary 
of a thousand dollars a month, a house to live in, honses and car- 
riages, servants and furniture, and, in fact, everything except Ids 
food. He conducts himself verv much like the President of the 


HER GOVERNMENT, PEOPLE, AND BOUNDARY 


51 


United States ; his daily routine is similar, and he is annoyed by 
office-seekers to about the same degree. He commences business 
at half-past six o’clock in the morning, and often has cabinet 
meetings as early as seven. The government offices open at seven, 
when all the clerks and officials are expected to be on hand, no 
matter how late they were dancing or dining the night before, but 
they knock off work at eleven for their breakfast and siesta, and 
do not return to their desks again until two. 

Cabinet ministers are paid $6,000 a year and congressmen 
$2,500, without any additional allowances, but the sessions do 
not last more than three months usuall}'', so that they may engage 
in their regular occupations the rest of the year. 

The standing army is composed of five battalions of infantry, 
1,842 men; one battery of artilleiy, 301 men, and one regiment 
of cavalry, 325 strong. Besides these regulars, who garrison the 
capital and the several forts throughout the country, there is a fed- 
eral militia which is drilled annually and required to respond to 
the call of the government at any time. 

The rank and file of the army is composed exclusively of In- 
dians, negroes, and half-breeds. They are obedient, faithful, and 
good fighters. Some of the fiercest battles the world has ever 
known have taken place in Venezuela with these poor fellows 
on both sides. Their uniform in the field is a pair of cotton 
drawers, a cotton shirt, a cheap straw hat, and a pair of sandals, 
hut when they come to occupy the barracks in town and do guard 
duty around the government buildings they are made to wear red 
woolen trousers, blue coats, and caps of red and blue, with regular 
army shoes. 

The officers are generally good-looking young fellows of the 
Ijest families, who take to military service and enjoy it. They 
wear well kept uniforms, have good manners, and are usually 
graduates of the university. 

The government has estaldished a school of industry for the 
education of the Indian children, and every year a commission 
is sent to obtain recruits for the army among tliem. The boys 
are tauglit trades and all sorts of handicraft, as well as reading, 
writing, and arithmetic, and the girls are drilled in the duties of 
the brnne. When they have reached an age when their faculties 
are fully develo])cd and their habits fixed they are sent hack 
among their tribe as missioiiaries, not to teach religion, hut civili- 
zation, and the Indians are said to he imja'oving ra})idly under 
the tuition of their own daughters and sons. 


VENEZUELA : 


52 


The chief towns of Venezuela are Caracas, the capital, and La 
Guayra, its seaport ; Valencia, which lies upon a curious lake, one 
of the most interesting of natural phenomena ; Puerto Cabello, 
where Sir Francis Drake dief] and was dropped into the water 
with a l)ag of shot at his heels, and Maracail)o, upon the lake of 
the same name, from which we get much of our coffee. 

The chief seajjort of Venezuela, La Guayra hy name, has the 
rci)Utation among sailors of having the worst harbor in the world. 
It is merely an open roadstead, beset by almost all the dangers 
and difficulties which seamanship can encounter. Even in calm 
weatlier the surf rolls up with a mighty volume and dashes into 
S})ray against the rocks uj)on which the toAvn is ljuilt ; but when 
a breeze is blowing, and one comes almost every afternoon, the 
waves are so liigh that loading or unloading vessels is dangerous 
and often impossible. 

Between La Guayra and Caracas is a mountain called La Silla, 
whicli reaches nearly 9,000 feet toward the sky and springs di- 
rectly from tlie sea. There is only a beach about two hundred 
feet in width at the foot of the peaks, along which La Guayra is 
stretched two miles or so — a .single street. Part of the town clings 
to the side of the momster like a creeper to the trunk of a tree, 
and one wonders tliat the earthquakes, which are common there, 
do not shake the houses off into the ocean. 

The distance in a straight line through the l)ase of the moun- 
tain would be only about four miles, and a Washington engineer 
once made ])lans for a tunnel and a calde railway, but it was too 
exi)ensive an undertaking. Over the dip in the saddle is an 
Indian trail about eight miles long, and in 1883 English engineers 
and capitalists l)uilt a railroad twenty-four miles long between 
the two ])laces, which climbs 3,600 feet in about twenty miles, 
and cree])S through a pass to the valley in which the ca})ital is 
situated. It is a remarkalile piece of engineering and offers the 
traveler a scenic view whose i)icturesqueness and grandeur have 
})een extolled from the time the Si)anish invaders came, in 1520, 
until now. IIunil)oldt says there is no picture combining the 
scenery of the mountains and the ocean so grand as this, except 
the i)eak of Teneriffe. It is as if Pike’s peak rose abruptly from 
the beach at Long Branch. 

There is nothing Indian about Caracas except its name, and 
it is one of the finest cities in South America. The climate is 
superb, being a perpetual spring, the thermometer seldom rising 
above 85 degrees and seldom falling below 60 ; there is not a 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. VOL. VII, 1B96, PL. VI. 



LA GUAYRA — FROM THE EAST. 




HER GOVERNMENT, PEOPLE, AND BOUNDARY 


53 


stove, nor a fireplace, nor a chimney in the town ; there is no 
glass in the windows ; the nights are always cool, and in the day- 
time there is a difference of ten or twelve degrees in temj)erature 
between the shady and the sunny sides of the street. 

In 1812 the city was entirely destroyed by an earthquake and 
twenty thousand people were killed. It came on Holy Thurs- 
day, when the citizens were pre]>aring for the great religious 
fiesta of the year. There was not a cloud in the sky and not a 
thought of danger in the minds of the people, when suddenl}’ the 
town l)egan to rock, the church hells tolled voluntarily, and a 
tremendous explosion was heard in the Ijowels of the earth. In 
a second the city was a heap of blood-stained ruins and the air 
Avas filled with .shouts of horror and the shrieks of the dying. 

There have been several earthquakes since, attended with se- 
rious casualties, and Avhile the people profess not to fear them 
they build the walls of their- houses three and four feet in thick- 
ne.ss and seldom make them more than one story high. 

The })eople of Caracas have an opera supported l;)y the govern- 
ment, a university, art galleries, public buildings that are beau- 
tiful and expensive, and homes in which one can find all the 
evidences of a refined taste that are knoAvn to civilization. While 
in some res})ccts the people are two hundred years behind our 
own, and while many of their manners and customs appear quaint 
and odd Avhen judged by our standard, there is no social station 
in America or Plurope which the educated Venezuelan Avould not 
adorn. Their women are proverlnal for their beauty and grace 
and their men for their dei)ortment. 

There is no convenient Avay of getting from Caracas to the 
Orinoco country exce})t by sea. Of course, one can “cut across 
lots,” and many peoi)le, armies, indeed, have gone tliat Avay, 
but it is a long, tedious, and diflicult journey, and dangerous at 
times, because of the mountains to be climbed, the forests to bo 
])enetrated, the rivers to be forded, and the trackless swani|)s. 
To a naturalist the trip is full of fascination, for the trail leads 
through a region ])rolific with curious forms of vegetable and 
animal life. 

To reach Ciudad bolivar, formei’ly known as Angostura, the 
])olitical ca])ital as well as the comimircial metropolis of the Ori- 
iVK-o country, is neither diHicult nor expensive, and, aside from 
the heat, the journey is eomfortabh*. It is like going from New 
York to .Memphis by sea, how(“V(-r, although not s<t great a dis- 
tance. 'I’here are no native means of transportation, but you can 


54 


VENEZUELA : 


take any of the English, French, or German steamers, and they 
are usually leaving La Guayra as often as twice a week to Port- 
of-Spain, on the British island of Trinidad. At least once a week, 
and generally twice, a steamer leaves Port-of-Spain for the upper 
Orinoco. The time required to make the journey depends upon 
the season of the year and the condition of the river. If Amu are 
going during the rainy season — that is, from the first of IMay tO' 
the first of November — you can reach Ciudad Bolivar in three 
days ; hut during the dry season, when the river is low, naviga- 
tion is slow and difficult because of snags, bars, and other ob- 
structions. At Ciudad Bolivar the traveler shifts his baggage to- 
a smaller craft, similar to those that ply the Ohio, Tennessee, 
and other streams of the United States, and starts onward for the 
head of navigation, A\dierever that may he. 

It is possil)le to go within two days’ journey on mule-back of 
Bogota, the capital of Colombia, by taking the Meta, one of the 
chief affluents of the Orinoco, and by passing southward through 
the Cassiquiare the Amazon can be reached. Few people are 
aware that a boat entering the mouth of the Orinoco can emerge 
again into the sea through the Amazon Avithout leaving the Avater. 
This passage is not naA'igahle for large steamers because of rapids- 
and obstructions, I)ut it might he made clear at an expense that 
Avould be very slight in comparison Avith the advantages gained.. 

Another branch goes nearly to Quito, the capital of Ecuador,, 
and in fact its affluents are so numerous and so large that in all 
the five hundred thousand square miles of territory drained by 
the Orinoco there is scarcely a point more than three or four 
days’ journey l)y mule from navigable Avaters, and there are said 
to l>e four hundred and thirty navigable branches of the river. 

From the Atlantic to the Andes, from the chain of the Cordil- 
leras that hugs tire coast of the Caribbean to the legend-haunted 
Sierra de la Parima, there is an area as large as the valley of the 
INIississippi, and similar in its configuration, capable of producing 
mighty crops of nearly CAmrything the Avorld feeds on, and afford- 
ing grazing ground for millions upon millions of cattle. From 
the foothills of the mountains in Avhich the sources of the river 
are, tAvo thousand miles to the sea, are great plains or llanos, like 
those of loAAai and Illinois, almost entirely destitute of timber, 
exce])t along the courses of the rivers, Avhere A^aluable trees are 
found. 

The scenery for the greater part of the voyage is interesting,, 
but as you reach the upjAer Avaters and enter the foothills of the 



VALLEY OF CARACAS, EAST OF THE CAPITAL, WITH COFFEE AND SUGAR PLANTATIONS. 


Jr-, 



HER GOVERNMEXT, PEOPLE, AND BOUNDARY 55 

Andes it l>econies sublime; but there steam navigation ceases, 
and canoes j>addled by Indians are the onh" means of transporta- 
tion. The heat along the lower river is intense, but the boats 
are built so as to protect the traveler from the sun and afford tlie 
greatest degree of coolness possible. The water is turbid and 
muddy; the banks are low, and the Orinoco, like the Missouri, 
often tires of its old course and cuts a new one through fields or 
forest; on either side the coarse grass and reeds grow tall, and 
toward the end of the season are topped with tassels that nod 
and droop in the sun. 

At daybreak long lines of pelicans and other water birds 
awakened 1 >y the breathing of the steamer go clanging out to sea, 
and as morning wakens, the thin blue mist that nature nightly 
hangs upon the river rises and leaves the slender rushes that line 
the banks to quiver in the burning glare. Toward noonday a 
breeze springs up, which is as regular and faithful as the stars ; 
it cools the atmosphere, covers the surface of the river with pretty 
ripples, and makes life possible under a tropic sun. There is no 
twilight ; the sun jumps up from below the horizon in the morn- 
ing and jumps down again at night, and then tor a few moments 
the sky, the river, and the savannahs are one vast rainbow, livid 
with colors so spread and blended that the most unpoetic eyes 
cannot behold it without admiration and awe. 

The smaller streams are sheltered by flower-bespangled walls 
of forest, gay with innumerable insects and birds, while from tlie 
branches which overhang them long trailers droop and admire 
their own gorgeousness in nature’s mirror. Majestic trees whose 
solitude was undisturl^ed for centuries are covered with decora- 
tions that sur))ass the skill of art; their trunks and limbs con- 
cealed by garlands finer tlian were ever woven for a bride — masses 
of scarlet and jnirple orchids, orange and crimson, l)lue and 
gold — all the fantastic forms and lines with which nature liedecks 
her robes under the fierce suns and the faltering rains of the 
tropics. 

The onl}’’ jilace of real importance, the entreiiot of all com- 
merce, the headquarters of all trade, the source of all supplies, 
and the political as well as the commercial capital of lU'arly half of 
the re])ublic of Venezuela, is (dudad Bolivar. It has about 12,000 
inhabitants, representing almost every nation on earth ; it is built 
upon a clay bluff about seventy feet aliove high-water mark, so 
that it is in no danger of being swept away. During the six 
months of dry season, when the water is low, most of the ship- 


56 


VENEZUELA : 


])ing business is transacted upon the beach. The government 
lias concentrated at Ciudad Bolivar the civil and military au- 
thority. It has the only custom-house upon the entire Orinoco 
system and practically the only courts. 

The city resemhles other Spanish-American towns, for they are 
all alike, has a number of jiretty foliage-shaded squares, several 
rather imposing government buildings, a cathedral, a puldic 
market, a theater, a college, and the inevitable statues of Bolivar, 
the liberator, and Guzman-Bianco, the regenerator of Venezuela. 
The volume of business done there is enormous in jiroportion to 
the jiopulation, as it is the supply iioint and the })ort of shipment 
for a large and productive area. Within the last few years the 
exports of gold alone from that little town have been valued at 
8oh,0( )0,( )00. The ])rincipal merchants are Germans, the restau- 
rant keepers are Italians, and the lal)oring classes are negroes 
from the West Indies or Canary islands. Shii)s from all ports 
in the world land at the i>iers, and the flags of every nation may 
he seen floating from the poles on the house-tops. The manu- 
facture of cigars is extensive, as excellent tobacco is cultivated in 
the neighl)orhood, and in almost every household the women 
emjtloy their sjiare time rolling the leaves into what are known 
in the nomenclature of N(wth America as “ Wheeling stogas.” 
These are u.sed in amazing quantities by the negro roustabouts, 
and are sent down the river to Los d'aljlas, from whence they are 
carried on mule-hack 150 miles into the interior to the mines. 

The most })rofitahle mine in Venezuela, and one that is famous 
all over the world, is El Callao, situated on the borders of the 
dis])uted territory, in the state of Bolivar, al»out one hundred 
and fifty miles south of the Orinoco river. 

I suppose that the richest gold mine ever discovered Avas the 
Consolidated ^hrginia, the mine from which so many of the Cali- 
fornia mining kings drcAV their enormous fortunes. It is diffi- 
cult to calculate the output of the old Spanish mines in South 
America, hut El Callao is reckoned second to the Consolidated 
Virginia in the amount of g(fld ])roduced, and I understand that 
it has already produced more “ free gold ” than any other eA’er 
o])ened. It was Avorked Ijy the Indians long ago ; at least its 
location corresponds Avith that of a legendary de})Osit fi’om Avhich 
the saA'ages of Venezuela got much of the gold taken from them 
by the S])aniards, hut after the latter took possession of the coun- 
try its existence AA'as a matter of much doubt, until four Jamaica 
negroes hajq)ened to run across it on a prospecting tour. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. VIII. 



VALLEY OF CARACAS, WEST OF THE CAPITAL, WITH PLANTATIONS AND SUGAR FACTORY. 



HER GOVERXMEXT, PEOPLE, AXD BOUXDARY 


57 


Three agreed to sell their share in the discovery to a party of 
Corsicans for a nominal price. The fourth negro decided to 
keep his interest, and has ahvays been glad that he did so, for 
vithin the next two or three years he was able to return to his 
native island, where he has since lived like a nabob at the city 
of Kingston, the richest man in Jamaica. 

The Corsicans, when the}’ began to realize the value of the 
jiroperty, sent two of their number to England, and succeeded 
in raising sufficient money to build a stamp-mill and introduce 
other necessary machinery ; 1nit they did not capitalize their 
com])any at ten or tAventy millions of dollars, as is customary in 
the United States, nor did they put any of their stock on the 
market. They issued only thirty-tAvo shares, Avhich Avere sold 
originally at S2,500 a share cash, making their entire capital 
$80,000. These shares have since sold for half a million dollars 
each, at Avhich rate the mine Avould 1>e AA’orth $16,000,000; Imt 
most of them are still in the possession of the original suliscribers. 

There is little immigration and labor is scarce. Most of the 
miners are negroes from Jamaica, Trinidad, and other A\'est 
India islands. They appear to be the only class of human 
beings Avho can endure the climate, for the land is Ioav and the 
mines are situated almost directly on the equator. The country 
is comparatiA'ely healthy, but the rays of the sun are intense, 
and until a man liecomes acclimated he is easily })rostrated by 
e.xposure. Wood is the only fuel, and a A'ery poor quality costs 
seven dollars a cord. 

Some of the mines are Avithin and some Avithout the territory 
claimed by Elngland, l)ut Great Britain has tAvo gunboats ujxrn 
the Orinoco, and at the first possil>le excuse Avill tak(* })ossession 
of the entire mineral district. Such an act Avould be audacious, 
but AA’ould l)c lieartily Avelcomed by the i)Cople, Avho AA'ould A’ery 
much |)referan English colonial goA’ci'innent to Venezuelan rule. 
I have l^een told by dozens of men — .Americans, Germans, natiA’c 
Venezuelans, and representatives of other nations — that if the 
<|Uestion Avere subnutted to the miners the decision Avould lu? 
almost unanimously in favor of England. JJie most poi)ular 
and po])ulate<l diggings are on the Harima liver, in the disputed 
territory, Avhere several million dollars of foreign ca]tital, mostly 
British, is invested, and some twenty thousand miners are at AVork. 

The colonial authorities of fJuiana liaA’e calmly occu]»ied this 
territory, organizing jxdice, appointing local magistrates, assum- 
ing legislative as Avell as cxecutiA'c jurisdi<-tion, providing hiAvs 


58 


YESEZUELA 


and regulations for the government of the mining camps, requir- 
ing prospectors to obtain licenses from the colonial officials at 
Georgetown before commencing work, and to advertise their 
claims and locations in the Official Gazette of the colony. 

These regulations have been imposed by the British colonial 
authorities within a territory to Avhich they did not claim owner- 
shi}> until the discovery of gold, and over which they did not 
attempt to exercise jurisdiction until 1883 ; and as new mines 
have been discovered they have gradually pushed their frontier 
line westward until it now includes nearly twice as much terri- 
tory as they claimed twenty years ago and seven times as much 
as was ceded to Great Britain by Holland in 1814. It is true that 
the Venezuelans have shown no enterprise or activity in develop- 
ing their own resources. They have permitted foreign prospectors 
to enter and occupy the mining districts at their will, and have 
never attempted to exercise police or even administrative control 
in the mining camps. The original })rospectors, being English- 
men, naturally looked to the colonial government at Georgetown 
for ]>rotection, and the other foreigners fell in without a question,, 
acknowledged British sovereignty and obeyed British law. 

It was within this disputed territory, between the Orinoco and 
the Amazon, that the ancient voyageurs located the mythical city 
of Manoah, the El Dorado upon which the wonder and greed of 
two centuries were concentrated. Tidings of its barbaric splen- 
dor were brought home by every voyageur, and each caravel that 
left the shores of Europe carried- ambitious and avaricious men,. 
Avho ho})ed to share its plunder before their return to Spain ; but 
the alluring El Dorado was not a place ; it was a man. The term 
signifies “ the gilded,” and was originally applied to a mythical 
king who every morning was sprinkled with gold dust by hi.s 
slaves. The nuggets of gold and the rudely wrought images which 
Sir Walter Raleigh laid at the feet of Queen Elizabeth when he 
returned from his exploration of the Orinoco doubtless came from 
the noAV famous mine of El Callao. But the El Dorado was never 
found ; no courage could overcome, no persistence could dis- 
cover, what did not exist, and the fabulous king of the fabulous 
island still sits on his fabulous throne, covered from his fabulous 
crown to his fabulous sandals with the fabulous dust of gold. 


[Note — The foregoing article is an abstract of a lecture delivered before The National 
Geographic Society by Mr Curtis, January 10, 1896. The lecture itself consisted of se- 
lected extracts from Mr Curtis’ book, “V’enezuela: A Land Where it’s Always Sum- 
mer,” which will shortly be published by Harper k Brothers.] 


THE PANAMA CANAL ROUTE 


B}" Robert T. Hill, 

United Stales Geological Survey 

Within the space assigned to me for the discussion of the most 
unpopular of the three rival isthmian routes, I can do little more 
than present a brief summary of the facts concerning the Panama 
canal. At the outset it ma3"be stated that if the Nicaragua route 
could he exclusive!}" controlled by the United States, even if it was 
far more costly, my personal preference would be for it. In no 
case, however, does such personal preference necessitate or justify 
misstatements as to the rival Panama route, concerning which, 
since it was allowed to pass out of American control into the 
hands of the French and to become involved in serious financial 
difficulties, imblic opinion in this country seems to be singularly 
misinformed. 

That this route is in control of a foreign power ; that it is a 
rival enterprise to one supposedly controlled by a private corpo- 
ration in which American citizens and officials are interested, and 
that it has fallen into ill repute through scandalous mismanage- 
ment are facts which are undeniable. 

These questions of adiuinistration have, however, little to do 
with the purely scientific problem of what constitutes the most 
feasible route for uniting the two oceans by a maritime canal. 
Some ])atriotic Americans, while admitting that national preju- 
dices draw them to a preference for the rival route, can yet see 
the arguments on both sides of the question and can di.stinguish 
the proposition that the financial failure of the Panama Canal 
Company in Paris is no condemnation of the feasibility of the 
Panama canal route. 

The engineering investigations that liavc been conducted since 
the ])ractical susj)ension of operations on any extensive scale on 
the canal itself have been singularly overlooked. At least three 
thoroughly e(iuip|)ed eorj)S of engineers have resurveyed the 
entire route and recommended modifications in the plans. The 
rejiorts of two of these commissions descrihing the ini|)roved 
lock-level .system are in print. 'I’he third and more recent com- 
mi.ssion was engaged in studying the canal during my visit to tin; 

6'J 


60 


THE PANAMA CANAL ROUTE 


isthmus in January, 1895. It comprised a large and competent 
Imdy of skilled engineers, and my final word must V>e held in 
reserve until this commission has made its report. 

In the meantime, what are the principal facts concerning the 
feasibility of the Panama route? 

1. It is the shortest of all, being only 42 1 miles from sea to 
sea, across about 20 miles of which the canal has been completed 
to 28 feet Ijelow sea level, making the actual present distance I)e- 
tween the two oceans less than 25 English miles, or about one- 
seventh of the actual distance (170 miles) to he overcome between 
Greytown and San Juan in the case of the Nicaragua route. 

2. It is the only ])ossil)le tide-water route in the whole isthmian 
region. To accom])lisli it would, it is true, require great engi- 
neering and constructional feats, but in no respect impossilde 
ones. 

8. It is said by competent and reliable engineers to he feasible 
for a lock-level route. The plan ]woposed involves the construc- 
tion of a dam at Bujio or San Pahloa of about the same size as 
that which is admitted to he necessary at San Carlos on the Nica- 
ragua route, together with six locks. The construction of this 
dam would create a summit lake 125 feet above tide water and 
12 miles in len<rth if placed at San Pahloa, or 21 miles if located 
at Bujio. In addition to giving free summit navigation, such a 
lake would control the floods of the Up])er Chagres, storing tliem 
in the rainy season and supplying water to the summit lock- 
levels. 

4. It is in a region comparatively free from seismic disturb- 
ance and one in which no volcanic action has occurred since late 
Tertiary time. The Nicaragua route is within a zone of topo- 
gra])hically destructive volcanic disturbance, where earthquakes 
are frequent. 

5. It has what no other route possesses : excellent terminal 
harbor facilities, with anchorage at both oceans so improved that 
ships can enter and leave at will. 

fi. It has been minutely surveyed. Every ^foot of the “ trace ” 
has been cleared of vegetation and ]mrtially excavated and tested 
I)v ])onngs, so that the actual problems of construction are ap- 
proximately known. As to problems that will surely arise in the 
Avork on the other route Ave liaA’e absolutely no data. 

7. It has on the Caribbean side only 31 miles of flooded thahveg 


THE PvlJNM.Y.l CANAL ROUTE 


61 



(21 of the Chagres and 10 of the Obispo) to be threaded and con- 
trolled, against 111 miles in the case of the rival route. It is true 
that the Nicaragua route proposes to avoid a part of the San Juan 
1)V a cut of 40 miles, but the control of the remainder will be a 
similar and probably as serious a problem as that 2 )resented by 
the Chagres. From 10 to 15 miles of the latter have been coni- 
l)letely diverted and the remainder can be controlled by the i)ro- 
l)Oscd summit-level lake. In the case of a sea-level plan the di- 
version would still be a great problem, but by no means an insur- 
mountable one. 

8. It will be the cheapest route to construct. The plant already 
furnished, with two-fifths of the excavation now completed for a 


PANAMA CANAL, 

SHOWING A PORTION OF THE 13^ MILES COMPLETED ON THE CARIBBEAN SIDE. 
WIDTH, 80 FEET. TOPOGRAPHY OF CENTRAL PORTION VISIBLE IN BACKGROUND. 

sea-level route, including (;x])cnse of administration and ma- 
chinery, lias actually cost 8 150,00! ),()()(). Fpon this basis it is 
estimated that the entire length of 421 miles will cost 81 1(),00<),000 
more U]»on the lock-level plan. A sea-level route would cost 
82< M ),( M )0,000 more. 1'lie amount of work necessary to complete 
the Fanama canal is far le.ss than would be required to construct 
the Nicaragua route. Engineers admit that 40 miU*s of excava- 
tion — almost equivalent to the entire length of the Panama 
eaiial — are necessary along tlu; rival route. What the cost of the 



62 


THE PANAMA CANAL ROUTE 


construction of the Nicaragua route will be can never be told 
until the actual work is well under way. 

9. It is nautically the most important route, being more cen- 
trally situated relatively to the two continents. Its Carilibean 
terminus is as near by sailing and steaming routes both to the 
North Atlantic and European ports as is Greytown, while its 
Pacific terminus is far more convenient to the South American 
trade. 

10. Politically it is the only route at present possessing treaty 
rights under guaranteed neutrality with any isthmian country by 
which canal construction can be i^ermitted. The region through 
which it passes is American in interest and practically under our 
protectorate, and a neutral canal across it, even though the French 
construct it, would give us all the privileges now apparently to 
l)e obtained via Nicaragua under the Bulwer-Clayton treaty. 

The foregoing are the salient facts concerning the Panama 
route. An ini])ortant point to remember is that underground 
conditions, l)oth favorable and unfavoraI)le, and which were not 
antici])ated from the preliminary surveys, have Iieen encountered 
in the course of construction. For instance, the 25 kilometers of 
the canal on the Caril)hean side were contracted for and paid for 
as rock-cutting, when the material ]>roved to be, for the most part, 
the easiest kind of earth excavation. On the other hand, an 
utterly unlooked-for obstacle developed in the creeiDing of the 
clays for al)out a mile along the Culebra summit. These are 
geological considerations with regard to which we have alisolutely 
no information along the Nicaragua line, and it is urgently 
needed. 

Although not essentially pertinent to the subject of feasibility, 
a few words concerning the actual present status of the canal con- 
struction may he of interest. The com})any has passed through 
the ordeal of experimentation and financial fiiilure and its affairs 
are now in the French courts, under whose direction accurate re- 
searches have been ])rosecuted during the past year to ascertain 
the exact expenditures of the late company and to determine 
what steps are necessary to complete the work. Upon the report 
of the commission will depend the completion of the canal. The 
French people have put too much money into the enterprise not 
to complete it, and Americans need not deceive themselves with 
the expectation that the work is abandoned or that the company 
is utterly bankrupt. Almost the entire plant, including dredges. 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 



CONSTRUCTION WORK ON THE PANAMA CANAL, NEAR THE SUMMIT, 
Photographed by Robert T. Hill. 





THE CAXAL ROUTE 


63 


raihvay locomotives and other machiner}^ track, barges, steam 
vessels, pontoons and locks, houses, shops, etc., for the comple- 
tion of the v'ork is on the ground, and this alone represents a 
large proportion of the money expended hy the old company. 
This plant is not undergoing the ruinous decay that has been 
represented in this country, but, on the contrary, it is kept in 
scrupulously good order and will be available for the completion 
of the work. 

The old Panama Company was responsible for nearly 
6266,000,000, of which it spent 6150,000,000 upon the plant 
and construction and criminally distributed nearly 6100,000,000 
among the dishonest parties who brought the company into dis- 
rei)Ute. In the hands of the courts, however, there still remains 
some 820,000,000 awaiting the reorganization of the company. 
That the present commission does not consider the route im- 
practicable is attested by tlie fact that they have kept the work 
progressing, al)out 2,000 laborers having been employed upon the 
construction of the canal during the past year. When, in Feb- 
ruary, 1895, 1 took the photograph reproduced as an illustration 
to this article I counted five locomotives at work cariying away 
the excavations from the Culebra summit. 

No available news comes to this country from France concern- 
ing the operations of the canal. The Outlook, however, in a recent 
issue, makes the following statement: 

“It was announced recently that the French company in charge of the 
work on the Panama canal is now collecting 2,000 more men from Jamaica 
and other West Indian islands to add to the 1,800 now at work, and that 
it is intended eventually to increase the force to 6,000 men. The New 
York Evening Poet declared that it had received information which it 
considered trustworthy that the money to finish the work on the j)resent 
plan has all been furnished, and that nothing can prevent the opening of 
the canal at the appointed time, e.vcept accidents and obstacles not now 
anticipated. The managers even expect that the work will be completed 
in six years. This is (juite in line with the report maile by Sir Henry 
Tyler, the late president of the Grand Trunk railway, who has been visit-' 
ing Panama. He .says that it is propt)sed to construct two large dams, 
one across the Upper Chagres and one on the Lower Chagres river. Two 
lakes will thus be formed, the upper one siijiplying water to the higher 
portion of the canal, while the lower one will be mainly usc<l to furnish 
water for the navigation of the lower j)art. Ten locks will be built, en- 
abling the canal to reach a height of 170 feet above the sea level. Sir 
Henry bolds that there is no insiijauable didiculty in the compUdion of 
the canal in six years, at a cost of .filOO, 000,000, by utilizing the w<wk 
already done for a distance of sixteen ndles from C<don ami four miles 
from Panama.” 


64 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAILWAY 


COMPARATIVE TABLE: NICARAGU*A AND PANAMA ROUTES. 


Nicaragua. 


Panama — Lock- 
level plan. 


Natural distance, sea to sea miles. . 

Present distance, sea to sea miles. . 

Natural altitude, continental pass feet. . 


Same, as reduced by artificial cutting, .feet. . 

Miles of river course, Caribbean side 

iVIiles of river course below site of propo.sed 

dams 

Proportion of above diverted bj' artificial cut- 
ting 

Proposed height, summit level feet. . 

Proposed dams to create summit level 

Miles of proposed summit navigation 

Proposed locks 

Excavation (miles originally proposed) 

iNIiles of excavation completed for lock plan. 
Miles of excavation to be completed for lock 

plan 

Terminal harbors 

Plant on ground for completion. . 

Estimated cost to complete canals 


169.5 

169.5 

147 

147 

111 

32 


110 

1 

144.8 

7 

40.3 

0 


40.3 

None. 

$ 133 , 500,000 


42.5 

25 

260 

246 

31 


21 


10 

125 

1 

12 or 21 
6 

42.5 

15-20 

101 

Completed. 

All. 

$ 116 , 000 , 000 ' 


1 Tlie adoption of tlie lock-level plan will avoid several miles of e.xcavation originally 
contemplated in sea-level plan. 2 U. S. Commission. 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAILWAY 
By Elmer L. Corthell, C. E., D. Sc., etc. 

The Avoiid is still discussing the question of the best route by 
Avhicli to fiicilitate interoceanic traffic bettveen the Atlantic and 
the Pacific. Coniinercial interests now center on three routes — 
Panama, Nicaragua, and Tehuantepec. The first has entailed 
enormous exiienses on France and involved many of its promi- 
nent citizens in serious conqdications ; the second has been spe- 
cially urged on the United States as the Ameriean route; the 
third, advocated for many years by a great genius, has been ad- 
vanced to snch a stage liy Mexico as to be the only Avork that 
jiresent conditions haA'e justified. 

Addressing ourselves to the advantages of the Tehuantepec 
route, its interesting construetive, commercial, and geographic 
features must be prefaced by a brief historical resume. The 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP PAILWAY 


(55 


Mexican republic in 1824 invited proposals to open the isthmian 
route, but internal dissensions delayed action. In 1842 Santa 
Anna granted a charter to Jose de Garay, but the only tangible 
result was the complete survey of the isthmus by Gaetano iNIoro, 
an able Italian engineer. In 1850 efforts to negotiate treaty 
rights for the United States in this respect failed ; but by the 
Tehuantepec Railroad Company, chartered l)y Mexico, exhaust- 
ive surveys of the route were made, under the direction of Gen. 
J. G. Barnard, U. S. A., hy Mr J. J. Williams, whose report of 1852 
is the most complete ever published. In 1868 the Loui.siana 
Tehuantei)ec Company conducted a large trans])ortation Imsi- 
ness of freight and passengers over a partly built Avagon road, 
but its charter of 1857 AA^as soon forfeited. The life of tlie La 
Sere grant of 1867, nullified in 1879, AA^as marked l)y the active 
interest of the United States in the proldem of interoceanic com- 
munication. In 1870 Commodore Shufeldt, sailing Avith an able 
corj)s of army and navy assistants, exhaustively surveyed Te- 
lAuantepec and Nicaragua, and in his report strongly advocated 
the Tehuantepec route for its many adA'antages. Mexico coop- 
erated in an independent survey under Sehor M. F. Leal, noAV 
her secretary of })ublic Avorks. 

It Avas President Diaz Avho initiated railroad construction and 
has so earnestly persisted in efforts to open an international route 
aenjss this isthmus. Under the charter of 1878 Mr EdAvard 
Learned, an American, constructed 22 miles, receiving a sul)sidy 
of 812,000 })er mile, but in 1882 he surrendered his charter to 
tlie Mexican go A'ernment, receiving, l)y arbitration under charter 
pnn'isions, 8125,000 in Mexican sih'er and 81,500,000 in gold. 
These futile i)riA'ate effijrts led Mexico to undertake the AAork 
herself; Imt she soon rcA'erted to the contract .system, and undei- 
Mr 1). Sanchez, a Mexican, some miles of track Avere laid on the 
Atlantic and Pacific sides at an expense of 81,484,185 in Mexican 
silver. In 1882 a loan of £2,700,000 AA'as negotiate<l, and Mr E. 
Me.Murdo, of London, contracted to repair the track built and 
complete the road pro|)cr. Much Avork Avas done, but Mr Mc- 
Murdo di(;d and the contract AA'as abrogated, tlu' company hav- 
ing failed to comply Avith its terms. Some 82,000,000 of Mexican 
silvia* remained, and Avith this sum and an additional ai)pro|)ri- 
ation of 81,111,985 in silver Messrs ( .'4. Stanho])e, J. IL llanip- 
son, and F. L. Corthell completed tin* railroad in 1804. Mc'xico 
now operates it and is spending 81,990.000 in gold, under a con- 
tract with Mr S. Ilermanos, to perfect the e<|uipment and (iidsh 
6 


6G 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAILWAY 


some permanent structures. Since 1878, including the last con- 
tract and excluding interest, Mexico has silent on the route 
$16,000,00(1 in gold and $2,670,170 in Mexican silver. 

The completion and o})eration of this railroad will greatly fa- 
cilitate the construction of the ship railway when the time arrives 
to build it, as it ma}' with great advantage be employed to dis- 
tribute supplies, materials, and laborers along the line of the ship 
railway, and thus be used as an auxiliary line, which Mr Eads 
had intended to build in advance for this pur^jose. 

Permit me now to state the part taken by Mr Eads in solving 
the problem of interoceanic transit. In a letter to the New York 
Tribune, June 10, 1879, he advocated a ship railway at Panama 
instead of a shi}> canal. As against the douldful in-oject of a 
ship canal and in favor of a ship railway" he said : 

“ My own studies have satisfied me of the entire feasibility of such tran.s- 
])ortation by railroad, and I have no hesitation in saying that for a sum 
not e.xceeding one-third of the estimated cost of the canal, namely, about 
$.■>0,000,000, the largest ships which enter the port of New York can be 
transferred, when fully loaded, Avith absolute safety across the isthmus, 
on a railway constructed for the purpose, within twenty-four hours from 
the moment they are taken in charge in one sea until they are delivered 
into the other, ready to depart on their journev.” 

I le urged the construction of a ship raihvay on De Lesseps, but 
the great Frenchman said, “A canal at sea level or nothing.” He 
found nothing, at a cost not of $120,000,000, but of $2.50,000,000. 

IMr Eads then turned his attention to the much more advan- 
tageous route at Tehuante'pee, only 800 miles from the Mississipj)! 
jetties, and it was my good fortune to 1 >e henceforth associated Avith 
him until his death. 

The concessions of INIay, 1881, modihed in 188.5, provided for 
the construction and operation of the ship railAvay for 99 years. 
Many liberal provisions Avere included, such as the donation of 
about 2,700,000 acres of land, ample rights of Avay, right to col- 
lect tonnage and Avharf dues. Far the most valuable grant was 
the guaranty that one-third of the net revenue of the coinpaii}’’ 
for fifteen years from the opening of the raihvay should amount 
to $1,2.50,000, Avith the right to secure a similar guaranty for 
$2,500,000 to cover the remaining tAvo-thirds of the interest from 
foreign nations, but Avith the understanding that this guaranty 
should be sought from the United States. 

IMr Eads made the plans Avith his customary skill, and after 
obtaining the approval of many ijrominent naval architects and 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP 1' 


67 



Longitmle 

Sierra 'S.MartinWf. 


jJiV o m, ii r e e n w i c h 


Ihi/fameca 


Paso nuevo 


!pteapam ^g°^°'eacaqu( 


oMnlnacan 


ACAYUCANg J^tiparjj^ 


’^napa 


Almajroj 


v^sGaleras 


Incat 




I^Mari^ 


>/iuen] 


Chihuitan, 


JUCHITAN 


MAP OP THE 

Isthmus of Tehuantepec 

Showing the Houles of the 
National Railroad of Tehuantepec 
and the iirnposed 
' EADS SHIP RAILWAY. 


-r l/uusa- 
ISFKHIO'Hy 


uni: m OH 


68 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAILWAY 


engineers came to the United States Congress with a hill for the 
charter contemplated in the Mexican concession. Scarcely two 
months later the promoters of the Nicaragua canal came before 
Congress with a somewhat similar measure, and the two projects 
antagonized each other up to the death of Mr Eads, in 1887. 

Meanwhile the most exhaustive survey's were made and a satis- 
hxctorw route was laid doAvn between the ocean terminals of the 
isthmus. The requirements of the charter as to beginning con- 
struction work were fully complied with, and the amount of con- 
struction work done l)y Mr Eads will he best appreciated by the 
statement that about $500,000 in gold was exi)ended. 

From the Tehuantepec railroad to the Panama railroad, meas- 
ured along the Pacific coast, is al)out 1,200 statute miles, and to 
the Nicaragua canal aljout 800 miles. All commerce from these 
more southern routes must pass directly by the Pacific terminus 
of the Tehuantepec railroad in going to San Francisco, Oregon, 
Yokohama, or Hongkong. On the Atlantic side Tehuantepec 
has similar advantages in distance over southern routes. The 
calculation shows that on eighteen routes to be affected by open- 
ing u]) Te]iuantc[)ec the aggregate saving in distance over the 
present cape routes and Panama is over 125,000 miles and l)y sail 
routes nearly 200,000 miles. 

Mr Thomas J. Vivian, an expert statistician of the Census Office, 
was engaged to make a report upon the probable traffic on the 
proposed ship railway. The results of his very careful and ex- 
tended investigation and his clear analysis and groujnng of a 
great number of facts fully justified his selection. The detailed 
estimates show that in 1896 we might expect a traffic of 5,288,000 
tons of freight, if the railroad Avere fully equipped and sufficient 
time had elai)sed to develop the ncAV commerce. At a rate of $2 
per ton, to include handling and transpoiding from ship to ship, 
and adding to the total receipts from freight the passenger re- 
ceipts, Ave AA’ill have a gross income of $10,576,000. Estimating 
the operating expenses at 60 per cent of the gross receipts, Avhich 
for through traffic is sufficient, Ave shall have a net income of 
$4,294,000. The estimates of traffic for a ship raihvay, in the 
same conservative manner, give a total traffic for 1 896 of 7,263,000 
tons, Avhich at $2 per ton Avbuld yield a gross income of $14,526,000. 
Assuming the cost per ton for transporting from ocean to ocean, 
including all expenses, at 50 cents, the net income Avould be 
$11,044,000. 

The cost of moving steamships through any canal on the 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP PAIL Till I' 


69 


American istlimus will amount to more than the cost of operat- 
ing the ship railway. The time in transit through the restricted 
channels and locks at Nicaragua will be twice as great as the 
time I’equired on the ship railway, and will eyen exceed the time 
required on the railroad to load on the ears, haul across the isth- 
mus, and reload into yessels. The Suez canal, immeasurably 
easier to maintain than any canal would he at either Panama or 
Nicaragua, cost for maintenance and working in 1883 $2,784,869. 
A careful study of the cost of operating the ship railway gives a 
safe estimate of 30 cents per ton. I haye no dou1)t that with a 
traffic of 7,000,000 tons this is ample, but I haye decided to use 
50 cents per ton in the present estimate. As to the cost of pre- 
paring the three routes under comparison for a large traffic, the 
ship railway, fully equipped for canning yessels weighing 10,000 
tons and 7,000,000 tons of freight, will cost on a cash basis about 
$60,000,000. I shall not estimate the cost of building a ship canal 
at Panama or Nicaragua. The former, parti}" comjffeted — cer- 
tainly not over one-half — has already cost probably $250,000,000 
in cash and the plan changed from a sea-level canal to a lock 
canal, the practicability of wliich is extremely doubtful, due to 
inadequate water supply in the dry season ; and as to Nicaragua, 
we mu.st rely u))on the report, soon to be made public, of the able 
board of engineers appointed by the Presidcmt. 

4'he presentation of the subject will not be coni})lete without 
a re.sume of the jjroposed method of carrying shij)S overland by 
railway, for avc are aecustomed to regard any method that has 
not the sanction of use as visionary. 

Many ])r()jects for commercial sliii) railways have been made 
during the last thirty years. In 1872 Brunlees and ^Vebb, of 
Great Britain, made plans for a sliii) railway across the American 
isthmus at Honduras, which would haye l)een built but for the 
financial depression that. soon followed. It was intended to trans- 
])ort vessels of 1,200 tons register. The United States (‘ngineers 
have designed a steamboat railway to avoid tlie dangerous navi- 
gation of The Dalles of the Columbia river. The project and 
]»lans have receivcsl the ai)])roval of Congr((Ss and an api)ro])ria- 
tion of $100,000 lias been made to begin work. The ship railway 
of Nova Seotiii, designed by Mr H. G. C. Ketchum, Sir .John 
Fowler, and Sir Benjamin baker, to connect the gulf of St. Ivaw- 
rence with the hay of Fundy, d(‘serv(!s special attention, as it is 
nearly eonipleh'd. ( )f the $5,500,000 required, all hut $1 ,500,000 
has been expended. The line is about 17 miles long, and by- 


70 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAILWA Y 


draulic lifts are used for raising the vessels. The platform on 
Avhich the car and vessel rest is about 40 feet wide. There are 
20 hydraulic presses, each 25 inches in diameter, with a stroke 
of 40 feet, and the sy.stem is capable of lifting a vessel carrying 
1,000 tons of cargo. There are two tracks of standard gauge, 
18-foot centers, with rails weighing 110 pounds per linear }’ard. 
This ship railway would now Ije in operation hut for the lapi^e 



MAP SHOWING THE LOCATION OF THE CHIGNECTO SHIP RAILWAY, TO CONNECT THE 
GULF OF ST. LAWRENCE AND THE BAY OF FUNDY. 


of the government charter during a tem])orary failure of funds 
for construction. It is confidently expected that a rencAval of 
the charter and an extension of time will soon l)e granted. The 
hopes of all advocates of ship-railway methods are centered in 
this comparatively small railway at C'hignecto. 

The main features of the ship railway designed for the Tehuan- 
tepec isthmus are terminal docks jirovided with a great lifting 
steel pontoon, which was sunken with the ship carriage to the- 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAILWAY 


71 


bottom of a dock, guided in its movements b}'’ a large niimlier of 
vertical C}dinders. The ship is then tloated in over the carriage 
and placed in exact position, the pontoon is pmni)ed out, and 
the continuous keel block comes in contact with the keel of the 
vessel, Avhen a system of hydraulic rams working through the 
deck of the caisson pushes the keel block closel}" against the keel 
and also a large number of 1 >ilge blocks and side supports against 
the side of the vessel. Each one moving up vertically comes in 
contact with the ship, Avhen the adjustable surfaces of each sup- 
port, which is faced with rubber, take the form of the vessel by 
means of a universal hinged joint. The Aveight of the vessel is 
thus uniformily distributed, according to the principle on Avhich 
the hydraulic system Avas designed. 

The locomotives are then coupled ou and the vessel hauled to 
the opposite terminal, Avhere it is set afloat by exactly the reverse 
process. At tAvo points on the isthmus it becomes necessary, in 
order to obtain grades of not more than 1 per cent and to secure 
a practically straight line, to arrange for an abrupt change of 
direction, Avhich is done by a great floating turntable, simply a 
hollow pontoon grounded on the bottom of a masonry basin 
Avhen the car is hauled upon it, and then raised slightly upon its 
bearings by pumping Avater into the basin and made to revolve 
around a vertical central axis or guide until it takes the neAV 
direction. 

There is an important advantage Avhich the ship railAvays have 
OA'er the ship canals in the American isthmus, particularly in such 
rainy portions of it as Panama and Nicaragua, the rainfall at the 
latter place ranging from 200 inches to 300 inches per annum. 
The adA'antage lies in the fact that a ship raihvay is ahvays alcove 
the floods, Avhile the canal is alAVays IacIoav them and menaced at 
all times by most serious dangers. 

The Nicaragua route has been considered the American route. 
If it is so, then the Tehuantc])ec route is still more American in 
reference to all commercial features, and certainly is of more im- 
])ortance to us from a strategic point of vicAV than any route out 
of the piril)bean. 

The cl(;ar and decided vieAA's of Admiral Shufeldt upon its ad- 
A’antages Avere exjtresscd as folloAvs: 

“ Kadi iHtliimiH rinoH into importance as it lies ncar(*r tlic center of 
American political and commercial inlluence, and the intrin.sic value of 
this eminently national work oii^dit to he hased niion the inver.«(* ratio of 
the difitance from that center. A canal throne'll the isthmn.s of Telman- 


THE TEHUANTEPEC SHIP RAIUVAY 


72 

tepee is an extension of the ^Mississippi river to the Pacific ocean. It 
converts tlie gulf of IMexico into an American lake. In time of war it 
closes that gulf to all enemies. It is the only route whicli our Govern- 
ment can control. So to sj^eak, it renders our own territory circum- 
navigable. It brings New Orleans 1,400 nautical miles nearer to San 
Francisco than a canal via Darien.” 

The Tehuantepec route can Ije made more easily accessible to 
the United States and Mexico by railroad, over which armies and 
munitions of war can he quickly trans})orted. The gulf of Mexico 
is clear of foreign complications, belongs to these two great re- 
})uhlics of the Ncav M’orld, and wdien Cuba shall have become a 
State of the Union, as it may in the near future, we shall hold 
tlie entire circuit of this great sea. If, on the other hand, you 
look upon any Englisli map of the ('aril)bean sea you will notice 
that this great j)ower holds every entrance to it. Belonging to 
(treat Britain there are about twenty-five ditferent countries and 
islands, from British Guiana on the east to British Honduras on 
tlie ivest, which lying directly in front of Panama and Nicaragua 
guard all ajiproach to them. This important fact is not suffi- 
ciently appreciated in our plans for making the Nicaragua canal 
a United States canal, to he controlled, fortified, and defended 
by our com])aratively small nav}" against the preponderating 
naval ]>owers of Eunqie. 

Pn'sident Diaz is so fully convinced of the superior advantages 
of even an ordinal’}' railroad at Tehuantejiec over any other route 
located at more southerly ])oints that, in the face of the comstant 
menace of the Nicaragua jiroject, he has gone forward, in spite 
of stringent financial conditions in IMexico, to complete the 
National Railroad of Tehuantepec, and nmv that it is completed 
to ])rovide ade(piate harbor terminal facilities and equipment for 
a large interoceanic traffic. He looks upon the consummation 
of this great commercial undertaking as one of the most benefi- 
cent works of his long and glorious administration. 

[Note.— The foregoing ariicle is an abstract of a lecture delivered before the National 
Geographic Society, November 22 , 189.>. The lecture was considered so important a 
contribution to the literature of interoceanic communication that it has been printed 
in full as a public document by order of the Senate. See Senate Document No. 34, 54th 
Congress, 1st Session.] 


THE PRESENT STATE OF THE NICARAGUA CANAL 


By General A. W. Greely, 

Chief Signal Officer, United States Army 

The economic, physical, political, and strategic advantages of 
the Nicaragua canal have been so fully dwelt upon that their 
• presentation here is not called for, especially in view of the forth- 
coming report to Congress of the National Commission on this 
interoceanic waterway. This article is viewed as supjdementarv 
to the articles on the Panama Canal Route and the Tehuantepec 
Ship Railway, in order that the readers of The National Geo- 
graphic Magazine may know the amount of work done on the 
Nicaragua canal to date, its possible cost as given by the corpo- 
ration engineers, and also as estimated by the National Commis- 
sion, which latter forecast b}'- the press is subject to correction. 
The following summaiy covers the main features of the work. 

The concession for the canal was granted by Nicaragua to tbe 
IMaritime Canal Company of Nicaragua, incori)orated under act 
of Congress February 20, 1889, which comjiany reports annu- 
ally to the Secretary of the Interior. Statements relative to 
work done are drawn from its ro})ort of Decemlier 3, 1892. This 
corporation contracted with the Nicaragua Construction Com- 
I)any for the construction of the canal. In the s})ring of 1889 
detailed surveys of canal, locks, harbors, etc., were com])letcd, 
the final location of the route was jiractically determined, and, 
after jn-eliminary oi)crations, the work of actual construction 
began October 9, 1889. To restore Greytown harbor a break- 
water extending 1,000 feet into tbe ocean was built and lilled 
in with hrush mattresses, rock, and hydraulic-cement concrete. 
A channel of 10 feet formed naturally, which was increased by 
dredging to 15 feet, and thus maintained until tin* accretions to 
the beach on the windward side of the jetty reaehed its outward 
extremity, when the sand ])assed to leeward and partially clos(‘(l 
the new entrance. Five groU])S of ])erman(‘nt buildings were 
erected near San Juan, ineluding olliees, hospitals, storehouses, 
etc., which covered an area of 1 i{ acres. In addition, freight 
wharves, machine sho|»s, etc., were Imilt, and the more impoi- 


7.t 


74 THE PRESENT STATE OF THE NICARAGUA CANAL 


taut estal)lishments were eoniieeted by tramway. A clearing 
4()8 feet wide was made through the dense forest growth from 
Gi'eytown inland a distance of 10 miles, and a similar clearing 
of 0 miles was made to the west of Lake Nicaragua. A telegrapli 
line of 60 miles extended inland to Castillo, and this system was 
su[)plemented by telephonic side service. A harbor wharf 260 
feet long was built and equij)ped with modern steam conveniences 
for handling freight. A railway was constructed from Greytown 
a distance of 12 miles, with sidings, and was equipped with four 
locomotives, tifty ears, and suitable modern apparatus for rail- 
way and canal construction. The road built is of the most diffi- 
cult character, as it traverses for 6 miles a swamp considered 
impassable, where a large amount of corduiw and fill-work was 
re(|uired. The railwa}’ line was surve}'ed to Ochoa and its loca- 
tion determined, as well as from Lake Nicaragua to the Pacific. 

The contractors secured for their work the plant of the Amer- 
ican Dredging Comi)any, formerly used at Panama, consisting of 
seven ])owerful dredges, two tugs, twenty lighters, pumps, etc. 
Dredging commenced Avest of Gre^down harbor in 1890, and 
there was oi)ene'd to a point well inland — 1} miles — a channel 17 
feet deep and from 150 to 230 feet Avide. The Machuca rapids, 
San Juan riA'er, Avere materially improved for steamboat naAuga- 
tion. In addition to this, exhaustive surveys and borings Avere 
made in connection Avith the Ochoa dam, I^a Flor dam, and other 
important i)oints on the route. The superior employes Avere 
American, Avhile the unskilled labor Avas performed by natives 
of Central America and by Jamaica negroes. The health of the 
emploves has been unusually good, the total deaths in three 
years giving a rate of 1.48 per cent of cases treated. 

On November 9, 1890, the Nicaraguan government officially 
declared that the company had complied Avith the article requir- 
ing an expenditure of $2,000,000 during the first year of Avork, 
thus confirming for a term of ten years the company’s conces- 
sionaiy rights. The financial troubles of 1893 first compelled 
the Nicaragua Canal Construction Company, under contract to 
build the canal, to limit its expenditures to the preservation of 
its ])lant, and finally to suspend all payments, Avhich resulted in 
a receiver l)eing appointed b}' a United States court in August, 
1893. The reconstruction of the contracting company has been 
accomplished, under the name of the Nicaragua Company, and 
it is noAV making preparations for resuming AVork on the canal. 

MeanAvhile the United States Senate, in connection Avith bills 


THE PRESENT STATE OF THE NICARAGUA CANAL 


lO 

for aiding the construction of this canal, has carefully considered 
the whole subject, including the operations of the cor[>orations 
mentioned above. Three favorable reports have Ijeen made — two 
by iNlr Sherman, No. 1944, Fifty-first Congress, Second Session, 
and No. 1142, Fifty-first Congress, Second Session. The last, by 
INlr IMorgan, No. 331, Fifty-second Congress, Second Session, on 
April 14. 1894, adopts and reprints the first two reports. It 
appears that the INIaritime Canal Company expended between 
October 5, 1889, and October 7, 1890, S3,099,971,and that the total 
expenditures of the construction compan}^ aggregate $4,451,508. 

The total length of the canal is to be 169.45 miles, of which 
26.78 miles will be excavated canal and 142.67 free navigation, 
and there will be three locks on each side of Lake Nicaragua. 
The cost of the canal, equipped for full service and extending to 
deep water in both oceans through completed harbors, was esti- 
mated by Chief Engineer A. G. Menocal at $65,084,176, includ- 
ing 25 per cent for contingencies. These estimates were increased 
l)V a revisionary board of five distinguished engineers — J. Bogart, 
E. T. D. Myers, A. i\I. Wellington, H. A. Hitchcock, and C. T. 
Harvey — to $73,166,308, which amount other special contingen- 
cies augmented to $87,799,570; interest charges would raise the 
grand total to $100,000,000. The Senate committee states, how- 
ever, that all work done has fallen within ]\Ir Menocal ’s estimates. 
The reports dwell upon the value of this interoceanic waterway 
to the United States, strategically, politically, and also econom- 
ically. The committee })laced the outside limit of the cost of the 
Nicaragua canal at $100,000,000, and it therefore recommended 
that the United States guarantee $70,000,000 of 3 per cent bonds, 
which would vest the United States with the ownership of 70 
})er cent of the entire capital stock. 

The final outcome of this report was the authorization by Con- 
gre.ss of the ai>pointment of a commission of engineers to examine 
and report upon the route and surve3's of the Nicaragua canal. 

This commission, consisting of Col. \\h P. Ludlow, U. S. Arm}' ; 
M. T. E ndicott, U. S. Navy, and Alfred Noble, in the summer of 
1895 examined the route and such of the work as had been done, 
ami submitted its report to the President, by whom it will be 
transmitted to the ])resent Congress. 44ic character and sub- 
stance of the report have not been odiciall}' made public. 

fi'he New York Herald of November 25, 1895, put forth de- 
tailed accounts of the ri“])ort, which lack ollieial eonlirmation. 
'I'he salient le'atures of this article set forth that the commission 


76 THE PRESENT STATE OF THE NICARAGEA CANAL 


lias increased the canal company’s estimate of 869,893,660 to a 
“ provisional ” estimate of 8133.472,893. Anthoritative estimates 
can be obtained only at the cost of 8250,000 for an exhaustive 
survey covering two dry seasons. The present location from 
Orevtown to Brito is practically condemned, and it is suggested 
that the entrance to Greytown harbor should he moved east- 
Avard and its depth increased to 6 fathoms ; that the Brito harbor 
should he moved southeastAvard and its breakwater extended con- 
sideraldy, and that the canal should he moved south of Bernard 
lagoon and he straightened, etc. The proposed rock-tilled dam 
at Ochoa, across a iioAverful river and on a sand foundation, pre- 
sents grave difficulties, and should be Imilt only after careful 
study; it should })referal)ly be replaced by a masonry structure. 
The ])hysical conditions and regimen of San Juan river and Lake 
Nicaragua should be carefully studied; the proposed channel 
e.xcavated to Avidths varying from 250 to 400 feet instead of from 
125 to 150 feet ; all locks should be Avidened to 80 feet, so as to 
l)ermit the i>assage of Avar A'essels; rainfall ohseiwations should be 
instituted OA'er the Avhole route; all streams be gauged, and full 
e.\j)lorations of alternatiA’e routes be made in the eastern diA'ision. 

These recommendations of the commission for a deeper and 
Avider channel, for the construction of pa.ssing points, a reduc- 
tion in lock-lift, more cai)acious and deeper harbors, and a more 
stable construction, are in the direction of desirable improA’e- 
ments, Avhich, hoAVCA'er. ])ractieally double the cost of the canal. 

Even should these enhanced estimates be correct, and should 
the conseiwatiA'e judgment of the commission he fully indorsed 
by other engineers, it remains to l)e seen Avhether a feAV millions 
of dollars, more or le.ss, shall stand in the AA'ay of securing an inter- 
oceanic communication Avhich the Senate committee has said “ is 
indispensable to our physical and political geography and to the 
])ro{>er care* of the Government for the protection and prosperity 
of our Pacific coasts.” 

In A’icw of the national intere.st taken in this question, and 
especially at this juncture, it Avould seem that no backAvard step 
should he taken that Avould tend to Aveaken the poAver and in- 
fluence of the United States as the dominating factor in the Avel- 
fore of the American continents. From an American standpoint 
this canal seems to he a necessity, not only for our oavu com- 
mercial interests and national protection, but also as part of our 
‘‘ i>ul)lic policy of uniting the republics of America by Avorks of 
])eaceful deA'elopment.” 


EXPLORATIONS BY THE BUREAU OF AMERICAN 
ETHNOLOGY IN 1895 


By W J McGee 

The most extended exploratory work of the year was that of 
an expedition in charge of the writer through the territory occu- 
pied by the Papago Indians in Arizona and Sonora, and by tlie 
Seri Indians in western Sonora and on Tibnron and Alcatraz 
islands, in the gulf of California. During 1894 an expedition 
was carried through Papagueria and into the borderland of the 
Seri country for the ])urpose of making collections among the 
Indians of both tril)es, and the object of the expedition of 1895 
was to obtain supplemental information concerning the social 
organization of the Papago Indians, but especially to explore the 
territoiy of the Seri and to make studies of and collections repre- 
senting the maritime habits of these Indians. The part}" out- 
fitted in Tucson early in November, cro.ssed the frontier at Sasahe, 
and spent three weeks in visiting the villages of Papagueria and 
in surveying extensive prehistoric works left by a people of some- 
what advanced culture, probably the ancestors of the modern 
Papago. Mr Millard D. Johnson, who formed one of the party, 
carried forward a planetable survey, which will yield the first 
trirstworthy map of the region. Entering the Seri territory early 
in December, the party explored the area lying west of Bacuachi 
river and the delta of Sonora river, making a station on the 
highe.st point (about 5,000 feet) in the range provisionally desig- 
nated the Seri mountains, and afterward embarked in a small 
boat in that ])ortion of the gulf of California commonly map])ed 
as Kino bay, coasted to the strait El Infiernillo, and crossed over 
to an<l ex|)l(^red and surveyed Tiburon island, ddie country of 
the Seri Indians was found to be clearly set apart by natural 
features from the body of Sonora. Tiburon island is separated 
by a turbulent strait from the mainland, while the mountainous 
maiidand area contiguous to the strait is still more elh'ctively 
barred fnjin interior Sonora by a broad desert zone of saline 
playas and sand dunes something like the Mojave desert of Cali- 
fornia; indeed, some of the obs(‘rvations indicate that this zone 


77 


78 


EXPLORATIONS BY THE 


lies below sea level, and that it was during recent geologic times 
cut off from the gulf by the delta of Sonora river and afterward 
desiccated by eva})oration. The territory bounded by this desert 
barrier is mountainous, yet exceedingly arid ; it is two or three 
thousand square miles in area, including about five hundred 
sciuare miles comprised in Tiburon island. The territory is 
claimed and exclusively held by the Seri Indians, a distinct 
aboriginal stock, who have been at war with all other peoples 
almost constantly from time immemorial and are now reduced to 
some 400 in numl>er. These Indians are of especial interest from 
tlieir isolation, from a more warlike disposition and a more primi- 
tive culture than api)car among otlier known people of North 
America, and from a variety of features connected with these 
characteristics. They are of si)lendid physique, with notably 
dark skin ; they live chiefiy on the tiesh of turtles and other ma- 
rine (jrganisms, })artly on game and wild fruits, most of their 
food being eaten raw ; they are without agriculture, and have no 
domestic animals save a few dogs ; their habitations are tiinrsy 
lodges of shrubbery and turtle shells; the}' are scantily clotlied, 
chiefiy in pelican skins ; they navigate their waters by means of 
the balsa, manufacture simj)le baskets and a distinctive pottery, 
and make efficient use of excellent l>ows and arrows, yet their 
stone art is l)elow the stage commonly called paleolithic; and 
they have a singular marriage custom tending to pert)etuate their 
isolation. No i)rehistoric works, save such as they now produce, 
are found in their territory. While the Indians fled at the ap- 
})roach of the party, considerable collections were made in the 
rancherias they had just deserted, the articles designed for barter 
with them being left in exchange. In addition to the ethnologic 
researches and ma])ping, somewhat careful studies were made of 
the flora, fauna, and geologic development of the entire area trav- 
ersed by the expedition. The exploration of the Seri country, 
hitherto unknown except as to the coast, was attended with some 
risk and hardship, due chiefly to dearth of water, but was with- 
out casualty. 

In December, 1894, IMr James Mooney began a special study of 
tlie Kiowa Indians in Oklahoma. He recently returned from the 
field, after nearly ten months of successful Avork. The KioAva 
Indians j) 0 ssess a highly interesting calendar system of strictly 
aboriginal character, and this system Avas one of the subjects of 
Mr Mooney’s researches. Leading personages of the tribe keep 
a sort of year book in Avhich the principal events of the seasons 


BURE A V OF AMERICAN ETHNOLOGY IN 1S95 


7 <> 


are recorded in rude conventional s^unbols, the years being indi- 
cated by conspicuous symbols for the winter season, in conse- 
cpienceof which the records are sometimes denominated “ winter 
counts.” IMr Mooney Avas able to collect a considerable number 
of these calendars, which are of special interest as records of the 
history and migrations of the tribe during the last half century. 
From the records and from accompanying verbal statements, 
carefully checked by comparing different accounts, it is learned 
that this tribe of the plains is among the widest wanderers of 
their race. Although their original hal)itat was in the middle 
plains, they were accustomed to send parties on trading and ma- 
rauding expeditions eastward into the trans-Mississippi forests, 
Avestward into and be3''ond the Rocky mountains, nortliAvard to 
the SaskatcheAA'an, and soutliAvard over the deserts of northern 
Mexico as far as Durango, and even across tlie Sierra Madre to 
the vicinity of the Pacific, near Mazatlan. These records of tlie 
KioAva calendars explain the Avide distribution of primitive art 
products over the United States and corroborate the evidence of 
Avidely scattered obsidian, copper, sea shells, etc., as to the extent 
of aboriginal commerce. 

A notalffe expedition of the season Avas that of Dr .J. M^alter 
FeAAdces,Avho explored the little-knoAvn canyons of the Mogollon 
escar])inent in central Arizona and aftei’Avard made extensive 
collections of prehistoric pottery near Kearns canyon. While on 
the headwaters of the Rio Verde, along the face of the great escar])- 
ment, he Avas so fortunate as to discover extensive ruins of clitf- 
bouses, some of Avhich shoAved no evidence of exploration, and 
from these considerable collections of interesting archeologic ma- 
terial Avere made. His principal results AA^ere obtained at the 
preliistoric pueblo of Sikyatki, near Kearns canyon. Here, in 
com])an}' Avith Mr F. ^\^ Hodge, he excavated a ruin known from 
tradition, as Avell as from the collection of objects discovered, 
to be prehistoric. A large quantity of finely decorated pottery 
AA’ith a.ssociated objects aa^is obtained. The pt)ttery includes 
many examples of the finest grade of aboriginal work in texture, 
finisli, and decoration. The collection, Avhich com[)rises nearly 
7IH) eartheiiAvare utensils, beside numerous objects of Avood, stone, 
bone, etc., has been brought to Washington and is now in tlie 
National Museum. Competent judges are of opinion that it is 
the finest single collection of prehistoric pottery thus far made 
on the Western Hemisphere. 

After leaA’ing Sikyatki .Mr Hodge made a tour of the pueblos 


80 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


of New Mexico, beginning at Zuni, then visiting Laguna and 
Acoma, and in turn the villages scattered along the upper Rio- 
Grande and tributar}’ valleys from Isleta to Taos. The primary 
object of this reconnoissance was the identification of the namea 
of certain “ jwovinces,” tribes, and pueblos mentioned by Spanish 
explorers in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and the col- 
lection of data relating to the ethnology, and especially to the 
kinship systems, of the Pueblos, of which comparatively little 
has hitherto been known. In these investigations Mr Hodge was 
very successful, for except among the Tiwa he was enalded to 
obtain complete records of all the clans, both existing and ex- 
tinct, and from all the tribes (including the Pecos, of whom there 
are but two survivors) much valuable data which will contribute 
to the identification of tribal and village names of Spanish record, 
as well as bearing on their cosmogony, migrations, etc. He also 
succeeded in locating on the Rio Grande the village whence the 
llano people of Tusayan migrated nearl}^ two centuries ago; in 
determining rjuite clearly that the pueblos of Kawaika and Pai- 
yupki at Tusayan were abandoned during the historic period, 
the inhabitants moving to Laguna and Sandia respectively, and 
that de.scent among the Tewa people, at least in Xambe, Santa 
,;..Clara, and Tesuque, is agnatic, while among all other ^meblos 
descent is invariably in the line of the mother. These and many 
otlier problems which in the past have puzzled ethnologists not 
a little Mr Hodge has at last been able to solve. 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 

TJie Ydloustone National Park: Historical and descriptive. Illustrated 
with maps, views, and portraits. By Hiram ^lartin Chittenden, Cap- 
tain, Corps of Engineere, U. S. A. Pp. 397. Cincinnati: The Robert 
Clarke Company. 1895. §1.. 50 net. 

This book comprises three parts, “Historical,” “Description,” and 
“Tiie Future.” The first contains an excellent summary of the early 
trappers’ tales regarding this region, showing, as is well known, that they 
were not unacquainted with its marvels. It recounts the Washburn and 
Hayden expedition.s, the legislation e.stablishing the National Park, and 
the numerous army expeditions which for exploration or pleasure have 
traversed it. . It summarizes also the administration of the park. The 
second part describes rather inadequately the topography, geology, fauna 
and flora of the region, and then, in the ordinary guide-book form, de- 
scribes “a tour of the park.” The third part, which is very brief, only 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


81 


18 pages in length, is devoted mainly to re-stating the well-known argu- 
ments against permitting the entrance of railroads. The book closes with 
a series of appendices comprising a list of geographic names, with their 
origin, the legislation affecting the park and rules for its administration, 
a statement of appropriations for its maintenance, a list of its superin- 
tendents, and a bibliography. It is difficult to place this book. It ranks 
for above the ordinary guide-book, yet as a history its value is lessened 
b\' the military bias of the writer, and as a geographic work, descrij^tive 
of this interesting region, it may be characterized by the statement tliat 
onh’ 14 pages are devoted to its geography and geology, 13 to geysers and 
hot springs, and 11 to the native life of the region. The book is profusely 
illustrated with beautiful cuts, and contains several maps, but the latter 
are not in keeping with the typography and with the other illustrations. 

Sixteenth Annual Report of the United States Geological Survey. Part III : 
^lineral Resources of the United States, 1894, ^Metallic products. Pp. 
648. Washington, 1895. 

It is not easy to recognize in the handsome royal octavo volume before 
us the mineral report of the Geological Survey, which has hitherto ap- 
peared in so much less attractive a form. Although Dr Day’s reports no 
longer constitute a series by themselves, they cannot be said to have lost 
even in imlividuality, for the new volume is so profusely illustrated with 
maps and diagrams and is in almost every other respect so distinctly 
superior to its predecessors as not only to add greatly to its practical value, 
but to place it in the verj^ front rank of those admirable publications with 
which the Uniteil States government enriches from time to time the scien- 
tific literature of the world. The report contains statistics of the produc- 
tion of the various metallic minerals (those of the non-metallic are to follow 
in a separate volume) in the different states of the Union ; hut it does more 
than this. It presents like statistics (in many cases extending over a long 
Series of years) for other countries, together with tables of exports and 
imports. In atldition to these statistical compilations it contains several 
hundred pages of intere.sting and instructive te.xt on the geographic dis- 
tribution of the mineral resources of the world, in the.preparation of which 
several enunent experts hav'e been specially employed. The volume is, 
in short, a veritable mine of valuable information concerning some of the 
most important branches of human industry. 

Terrestrial Magiu-tisni: .\n International (Quarterly Journal. Publislu'd 
under the Auspices of the Ryenson Physical Laboratory, A. A. Michel- 
son. Director. Cldcago, University Press. Vol. I, Xo. I, January, 
1896. Edited by L. .\. P>auer, witli the Codi)eration of a large Number 
of American ami Foreign Associates. 

Tlie compass is a very (jld invention, the discovery its north and 
south jfointing j)ropcrty having been made by the Chinese centuries ago 
It is more than four centuries since it receiveil a (lxe<l i>lace in navigation 
under the name Mariner’s Compass. That it docs not point tridy north 
and sontli hut deiiartsor declines from the lueriilian was known inCohmi- 
biis’ day. At that time it was supposed that the departure from true 
north, or declination of the needle, was constant f<jr any one i>lace, thougli 


82 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


not the same in all places. That it is not always the same at any one 
place is said to have been discovered by Columbus ; so that the variation 
of the variation is a discovery four centuries old. That the needle, if free 
to move in any direction, would not “ hang level,” but that one end 
would decline or dip below the horizon, is also an old discovery, having 
been discovered by Georg Hartmann in 1-544; and, lasth’, that the force 
that acts upon the needle to make it point north and south is not the 
same in all places has been long known. 

The tme cause of the behavior of a compass needle has been a field for 
speculation and study ever since its peculiar behavior was observed, and 
a few students had up to the time of Gauss proposed and laboriously 
worked out ingenious theories to explain the phenomena observed. The 
publication of Gauss’ great work in 1838, however, marked a great ad- 
vance and gave a new and powerful impulse to the subject. The Mag- 
netic Union, fonned in the third decade of the present century, chiefly 
owing to the researches of Gauss, cau.sed the establishment in various 
j»arts of the world of magnetic observatories, founded and maintained by 
various governments. Of those so founded in the forties, several have 
maintained a series of almost uninterrupted observations to this day. 
This period of 60 yeare has seen j>rogress in our knowledge of terrestrial 
magnetism, but without any epoch-marking event. A vast number of 
observations have been accumulated, the 24 constants in Gauss’ funda- 
mental formula have been more accuratel}' determined, and a numl>er of 
minor phenomena observed and explained, but the subject is far from 
being exhausted. The modern ai>plications of electricity to practical affairs 
is not without its effect uj)on the subject of terrestrial magnetism. 

Is not the journal before us, then, to mark a new epoch in our knowl- 
edge of this subject? It seetns strange that, when almost every other 
branch of science has long had its special journal or organ, we should have 
waited almost for the dawn of the twentieth century for the first number 
of the first journal devoted to a matter of such great practical moment and 
for four centuries known by all civilized men to be important. 

We welcome this journal, then, as a needed one, rightly conceived and 
giving promise of usefulness. It enters, and enters under favorable au- 
spices, a field not hitherto occupied by any scientific journal. The names 
of the editors, the laboratory, and university from which it comes all 
combine to promise excellent results. It will be strange indeed if dis- 
tinct gains in human knowledge do not result from this enterprise. 

The editor. Dr Bauer, though a young man, is a most enthusiastic 
student in his chosen field. After several years of service in the United 
States Coast and Geodetic Survey, devoted chiefly to magnetic computa- 
tion, he went to Europe and devoted his energies to magnetic studies. 
Ilis doctor’s degree was obtained last year, as the outcome of these studies. 
To him more than to any other belongs the credit of founding the first 
journal given wholly to the subject of terrestrial magnetism, and patriotic 
Americans will perhaps derive some satisfaction from the fact that the 
journal was founded in the United States. 

To the editor and his associates and to the University of Chicago we 
tender our congratulations and hope for them a large measure of success. 



GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


83 


YUCATAN IN 1895 

The following is taken from a valuable report recently received 
at the Department of State from Mr R. L. Oliver, United States 
consul at Merida; 

The government census is »approaching completion, and from data 
already received it is apparent that the total population of the state ap- 
proximates 500,000, of whom 60,000 are in Merida. 

Yucatan has always been considered among the most advanced states 
■of IMexico in point of education. Schools have attained a high order since 
the advent of independence. While under the control and supervision 
of the local governments, the system of matriculation and education is 
mapped out by the federal and state authorities through their respective 
boards of education. The law is compulsorj', and though it is not strictly 
•enforced in Yucatan, reports show a good attendance. 

Sectarian schools are in decadence — in fact, they are only primary 
schools for the young. The revenue for their support is deilved from 
donations by patrons. The non-sectarian or public schools are main- 
tained at the expense of the state. The governor appoints directors, who 
in turn select professors and teachers. The total expenditure for j^uiblic 
instruction for the scholastic year 1894-’95 has been about 8100,000 (gold) ; 
this sustained 435 schools. 

Manufactures are confined to articles for local wants, such as soap, 
matches, candles, shoes, rope, etc. 

There are four railways, owned and operated exclusively by natives. 
One broad-gauge road has 75 miles in oi^eration ; the others, narrow-gauge 
average about 60 miles each, comideted, but are in course of extension’ 
Tariffs for passengers and freight are about one-half the rates charged 
for local business in the United States. 

Except wheat, rye, and other small grains, almost any plant will thrive, 
but the i)rincipal products are corn, beans, sugar, and hemp. The last 
named is a phenomenally hardy plant and flourishes almost equally well 
with or without rain ; corn, beans, and sugar require irrigation and yield 
barely sufficient for home requirements. If there is a failure, as at present 
in corn, the deficiency is su])plied from Mexico or the United States. The 
interior being unable to make up the deficiency in corn, the legislative 
authorities of A'ucatan petitioned the federal government to reduce the 
import duties on foreign corn that this necessary article might be within 
the limit of moderate price. The government scaled the tariff 50 i)cr cent, 
])cnding the next harvest, and .several cargoes have been imported from 
the United States. 

The people are very industrious. Necessity would impel them to be so 
were they otherwise, for although Yucatan is notan over-poi>ulated coun- 
try the industries are so concentrated, s(j lacking in diversity, and so nio- 
nopolizeil that the less fortunate are continually at a disadvantage and 
must necessarily be on tin? alert to share in the inadeipiate distribution. 
This applies also t<j the i>rofessions. 

Laborers in the cities average eight hours’ work, are paid by the piece 


S4 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERA PURE 


in industrial pursuits, and earn about 50 cents (gold) per day. Eaihvay 
and skilled laborers earn from 75 cents to $1 per day. They wear the 
same clothing, chiefly cotton and linen, during the entire year ; sandals 
of the ancient Egyptian pattern.are worn instead of shoes. Trade unions 
do not exist and cooperative action is infrecjnent, except in cases of for- 
eign intervention, concerning which they are extremely sensitive. 

On the plantations, where it is necessary to be exposed to excessive 
tropical heat under the direct ravs of the sun, no laborers have withstood 
it as have the native Indians. In past times unsuccessful colonies were 
formed by Europeans; later, Chinese were contracted for to work on the 
hemj) plantations. They were not altogether satisfactory, as they are 
physically unable to complete the daily task allotted to the native labor- 
ers — that is, to cut a certain number of leaves of hemp (sisal) for a stipu- 
lated price. The daily task is two or three thousand leaves, at the rate 
of 16 cents (gold) per thousand. On this largely depends the pecuniary 
success of the planter ; not that his margin of profit is so limited in what 
it actually costs to produce this fiber, but there is the enormous outlay 
for the preparation of the lands and for the planting ; the necessary delay 
of four or five years before the plant is large enough to cut; the insta- 
bility of the market, which is ever fluctuating ; the onerous export duties, 
state and fetleral ; the large personnel of the plantations— mechanics, 
overseei's, and servants— who, independent of their wages, are advanced 
provisions and clothing and furnished medicine and medical attendance 
Ijy the proprietor. There is now a great scarcity of laborei's, and with the 
new applications of the sisal fiber and its conseciuent increasing demand 
it is becoming a serious question how to meet prospective emergencies. 

A project is on foot to subdue and domesticate the 5Iaya Indians, va- 
riously estimateil at from 10,000 to 20,000 in number, who have from time 
immemorial held invincible sway over the southeastern part of Yucatan. 
It is hoi>ed to augment from them the number of farm hands ; but even 
in the event of accomplishing the subjugation of this semibarbarous race, 
it is exceedingly doubtful if the ]we.sent generation can be utilized, so re- 
fractory are they to civilized pursuits and so indolent and thriftless. Their 
trading-posts are on the boumlary lines of British Honduras. At times 
their chiefs visit Belize to purchase cloth, replenish their ammunition, 
and renew their contracts with the timber merchants, who pay them so 
much per ton for the privilege of cutting wood in their territory. They 
are friendly with the British and never interfere with negro cutters sent 
from Belize, but a 5Iexican or a native of Yucatan dares not encroach 
upon their lands. As this part of Yucatan is more healthful and its soil 
better adapted to the cultivation of fruits, sugar cane, and grains, it is not 
improbable that after the pacification of the 5Iayas the government will 
offer inducements to foreigners seeking homes in the tropics. The geo- 
graphical and the topographical situation of this part of the peninsula 
w< 4 uld indicate that it is essentially a horticultural district. Down by the 
Caribbean sea it is easily accessible to shipping, and its products would 
find a market. It lies in the path of vessels that now ply between the 
southern ports of the United States and ports of British and Spanish Hon- 
duras. This would also be the route for vessels to and from Nicaragua in 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


85 


the event of the building of the canal. Another advantage of transcendant 
impoi’tance is that of Ascension bay, which is one of the largest and deep- 
est harbors in all INIexico, and with the exception of Acapulco, on the 
Pacific, affords a safer anchorage than any other. This is a desideratum 
of no little magnitude when it is known that most of the Mexican gulf 
ports are open roadsteads and that in the winter months, when northers 
are frequent, shipping is hazardous and uncertain. 

Up to 1891-92 the credit of A'ucatan in Europe was unlimited and her 
merchants enjoyed an enviable reputation for integrity, but they were 
overtaken by the financial crisis, which found them overstocked and 
deeply indebted. Collateral securities shrank, debts contracted in gold 
had to be met with its equivalent in silver, which had coincidently de- 
preciated in its paying value 50 per cent; money became stringent and 
finally the collapse came. Many large dealers in diu^ goods and miscel- 
laneous articles were forced to suspend. They represent to European 
creditors millions which are hopelessly lost. This unfortunate state of 
affairs is largely due to the long credit system. However, this salutary 
lesson has had the effect of restricting them to more business-like meth- 
ods. Tlie tide of trade will eventually turn to the United States, this 
market affording quicker transportation facilities. 

The chief aidicles of imijort embrace groceries, canned goods, etc. ; dry 
goods, notions, cashmeres, men’s furnishings, millinery, and hardware of 
idl descrqitions, except plows, hoes, etc., which are not used. 

Hennequen (sisal) is the chief export. The annual output is neai’ly 
400,000 bales of 400 pounds each. In the first quarter of the present year 
there were shipped 81,030 bales, valued at 8582,932.50, United States cur- 
rency, on which state and federal duties amounting to $132,48] ($71,612 
United States currency) were paid; over 12 per cent ad valorem. Of the 
81,030 bales shipped, 66,269 were destined for the United States. With 
the exception of a small fraction, they were transported in other than 
American vessels. The August, 1895, imports amounted to 6,568 tons ; 
2,1.33 tons were imported in American vessels ; 4,435 tons in English, 
Norwegian, and German vessels. The exports amounted to 6,600 tons, 
of which 560 tons were exported in American vessels and 6,040 tons in 
English, Norwegian, and German vessels. 

From .Tanuary to .lune, 1895, there were shijiped to interior jtoints of 
IMexico 3,070 tons of coarse, unrefined salt. The bigh tariff on foreign 
salt makes it an expensive arti(;le. The home mines are difficult to work, 
and as in most cases they are only surface deposits of the .sea the yield 
<lepends greatly upon the weather. 

'fhe exports of logwood for the first three months of 1895 show 2,6:J4 
ton.«, valued at $80,000 in United States currency, clean'd for Euroj)ean 
countries. Other articles of export in small (inantilies are hides, ham- 
mocks, sarsaparilla, etc. The total <h;clared exixndsto the rnited .States 
for tin; fiscal yearending .Jnn(*.'!0, 18‘)5, were: From I’rogreso, $2,062, ftOfI ; 
from 5Ierida, $897,702 ; total, $2,i»60,lil 1 in United Statt's currency. 

Value of imports during the fiscal year 18!)4-’95, $l,0!»2,fl81 ; valueof e.\- 
])orts, $8,37(i,()80. Total amount of federal duties ]>aid thereon, $1,1 55, 9.32. 


PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 
SOCIETY, SESSION i 895-’96 


Regular Meeting, December 27 , 1895. — President Hubbard in the chair. 
Amendments to the l)y-la\vs were adopted as follows : 

Articlk I^’’ — Officers. — The business of the Society shall be transacted 
by a Board of ^Managers composed of eighteen members, six of whom shall 
be elected by the Society at each annual meeting. They shall serve for 
three years, or until their successors are elected. A majority vote shall l>e 
re((uisite fur election. Vacancies arising in the Board shall be filled by 
the Board. 

The Board of IManagers shall elect annually from their number a Presi- 
dent, six Vice-Presidents, a Treasurer, a Recording Secretary, and a Cor- 
responding Secretary. 

The following resolution also was adopted : 

Whereas the Society has adopted certain amendments to its by-laws, 
bv which it is proviiled that the members of the Board of ^lanagers be 
elected hereafter for terms of three years, and one-third of its members 
retire each year: therefore, 

Resolved, That the Pxjard of ^Managers is hereby instructed to group its- 
members iu three classes, the first of which shall retire in May, 1896, the 
second in INIay, 1897, and the third in May, 1898. 

Vice-President Ogden delivered an address on Coast Hydrography and 
its Uses, and ^Ir G. W. Littlehales read a paper entitled, “ Why the Sea. 
is Salt.” 

Special Meeting, Januarg 3, 1896. — President Hubbard in the chair. Dr 
D. C. Gilman, President of Johns Hopkins Univ'ersity, gave an address 
on The Geographic Development of Universities. 

Regular Meeting, January 10, 1896. — President Hubbard in the chair. 
Mr William Eleroy Curtis read a i>aper, with lantern-slide illustrations, 
on Venezuela : her Government, People, and Boundary. 

Special Meeting, January 17, 1896. — President Hubbard in the chair. 
Mr Robert E. Peary, Civil Engineer, U. S. Navy, delivered an address, 
with lantern-slide illustrations, entitled, ‘‘Explorations in the Far North,”' 
relating more particularly to his recent expedition to northern Greenland. 

Regular Meeting, January 24, 1896. — Joint ^Meeting with the American 
Forestry Association. Hon. J. Sterling iMorton, Secretary of Agriculture, 
in the chair. Addresses on the sul)ject of the Public Forests, Lauds, and 
Waters of the United States were delivered by Hon. Fred. T. Dubois» 
U. S. S., Hon. John F. Lacey, M. C., Hon. Thomas C. McRae, M. C., and 
^Ir William E. Smythe, of Chicago. 

Elkction'S. — New members have been elected as follows : 

December 27. — Hon. Win. ^1. Aiken, Chief Engineer G. AV. Baird 
U. S. N., Col. J. W. Barlow, U. S. A., Ensign L. C. Bertolette, U. S. N. 


80 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


87 


Capt. Nathan Bickford, Lieut. E. B. Chambers, E. R. E. Cowell, Pickering 
Dodge, D. J. Evans, Capt. M. C. Goodsell, U. S. M. C. , H. R. P. Hamil- 
ton, Hon. John B. Harlow, Robert S. Hatcher, IMrs Mary B. Jackson, 
R. M. Johnson, Capt. Louis Kempff, U. S. N., Miss Grace D. Litchfield, 
Miss Cordelia L. Mayo, .A,. E. H. Middleton, Hon. Joseph S. Miller, Rev. 
Dr W. H. Milburn, Maj. Hannibal D. Norton, Maj. G. C. Reid, U. 8. 
1\I. C., Capt. George C. Remey, U. S. N., George R. Simpson, Hon. 0. P. 
Tucker, Maj. W. M. Waterbury, U. S. A. 

January 10 . — Seilor Jose Andrade (Venezuelan Minister), Mrs D. C. 
Chapman, W. V. Cox, John F. Davies, John F. Downing, J. B. Fell- 
heimer, Aliss Ellen B. Foster, Capt. S. W. Fountain, U. S. A., Maj. E. A. 
Garlington, U. S. A., Prof. Edward L. Greene, Lieut. C. H. Harlow, 
U. S. N., Comdr. J. N. Hemphill, U. S. N., Franklin H. Hough, Dr J. 
C. Hvoslef, Medical Director Samuel Jackson, U. S. N., Dr P. E. Joslin, 
Lieut. J. F. Reynolds Landis, U. S. A., W. H. Pennell, Miss Alice C. 
Pugh, Mrs Nellie Grant Sartoris, Henry A. Seymour, Dr R. M. Thorn- 
burgh, Mrs John N. Webb, Alfred Jerome Weston, Hon. Carroll D. 
Wright. 

January 24 . — Miss Harriet Baidlett, Dr Frank K. Cameron, Richd. T- 
Fu.ssell, C. A. Gilman, Dudley W. Gregory, Dr G. T. Howland, Mrs Ida 
Rome Knapp, Mr E. de Kotzebue (Russian Minister), George A. Lewis. 
James AlcCormick, Airs J. C. AIcKelden, Hon. Richard Olney, Wilson N. 
Paxton, Judge AI. E. Poole, Gov. A. R. Shepherd, I. C. Slater, James H. 
Thomas, James A. AVatson, John E. AVright. 

Obituary. — The Society has to deplore the deaths of the following mem- 
bers during the month of January : Air E. B. AVight, a well known and 
much respected journalist, representing the Boston Journal and the Chi- 
cago Intcr-Ocean at the National Capital, and Air S. C. Gilman, a promis- 
ing young civil engineer and explorer, residing at St. Cloud, Minnesota, 
who, only a few days before his untimely death, contributed a valuable 
paper on his explorations in the Olympian mountains, AVashington, to 
appear in an early number of this magazine. 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 

NORTH AMERICA 

Fran’z .Iosku L\xd. The published statements of Air A. Alontefiore, 
the spokesman ofthe Jackson-IIarmsworth expedition, now enable one to 
definitely outline tlie outcome of the exi)e<lition down to July last. Jackson 
left Khabarowa in the ]Vinilward .August Ifi, 1804, and met the ice-pack 
in 70° 41F 49° E. Bell island was sighti'd, :i0 miles distant, .August 2o, 

but nnfavoraljle ice conditions prevented lamling then' or at capc^ Grant, 
which was in siglitsix days later, <listant40 miles. A landing was madt*, 
September 0, at Dell island, and the ship was frozen in while discharging 
cargo, September l.'k .Jackson, with his chosen explorers, passed the 


88 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


winter vers' comfortabl}' in a wooden house erected at cape Flora. Tlie 
ship’s crew wintered on the vessel and lost one man, the health of others 
being unfavorably ’affected. About sixty polar bears were killed, four 
being females. An autumnal depot was laid down at cape Barents and a 
spring one, in March, 1895, by a trip of six days, at Peter head, entrance 
of iNIarkham sound. 

The long journey, in which four ponies were used with great advantage, 
occupied from Aj)ril 16 to May 13. Softening sea-floes and signs of open 
water constrained a return from the farthest north, 81° 20' X., 54° 53' *E. 
Payer’s map of 1874 is said to be inaccurate and misleading. Zichy, 
Alexandra, and Oscar lands resolve themselves into groujis of islands, 
and Richthofen peak, of Payer, could not be located. 

Mr Montefiore, it is said, declares that Jackson’s success in his first 
year is unprecedented. If such reiiort be correct, this will not be the 
first cai)able exjdorer who may ask protection from injudicious friends 
who seek to aid him by unfounded aspersions of others. European ex- 
jilorersare able to refute on tlieir own account 5Iontefiore’s claim, e.spe- 
cially Payer, who, starting from a more southerly point, surpassed Jack- 
son’s latitude by 37 miles. 

For America, it is indisputable that Hall, in 1870-’71, far exceeded Jack- 
son’s latitude and opened up a new route and region, surpassing in im- 
l)ortance ’and extent anything that Jackson has done ; this with the 
loss of one man — himself. Greely in his first year, 1881-’82, explored 
4,0iX) square miles of new land and surpas.sed the highest latitude, made 
before or since, without the loss of a man. Peary, in 189l-’92, made the 
most remarkable inland ice journey on record, crossed Greenland to a 
j)oint far beyond his predecessors on the east Greenland coast, with the 
loss of a single man, V)y accident. Against this is Jackson’s northing of 
some 80 miles, with a loss of three men, one at cape Flora and two on 
the return voyage of the Windward. 

Auvsk.k. Congress is to appropriate 875,000 to mark the Alaskan 
boundary along the 141st meridian of west longitude, on which meridian 
have been determined three important points— Mount St. Elias, Forty- 
mile creek, and Porcupine river. By independent surveys, bj'^ United 
States and Canadian engineers, the points established differ onh' six feet 
at ]\Iount St. Elias and 400 feet at Porcupine river. Canada desires to 
e.stablish the meridian astronomically by joint scientific survey, which 
would require several years. The United States fiivors, as a less difficult 
and more speedy plan, a survey based on the points already established. 

Mexico. According to the last message of President Diaz, 566 miles of 
new telegraph lines have been built, the most important uniting Taco- 
talpa, Chiapas, with Penosique, Tobasco, opening a new route with 
Guatemala, and making a total mileage of 56,442 miles. Among impor- 
tant railway extensions is tliat from Monclova to the Pacific, of which 
292 miles have been approved. The surveys of the road from Merida to 
Campeche are progre.ssing and the plans of the lines from ^leiida to 
Progre.so have been adojited. The drainage works of the vallej' of Mex- 
ico are almost concluded, the excavations have amounted to 53,160,000 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


89 


cubic feet, and tlie tunnel is finished for a length of 32,140 feet. The 
grand drainage canal is nearly 30 miles long. 

Surveys have been completed for a cable road to connect the Interoceanic 
Railway with the summit of Popocatepetl, ascending from the ranch 
Semacas, on the northwest side. The railway is mainly for the transpor- 
tation of sulphur from the volcano, but it will be available for tourists. 
AVork has been commenced on a line from Baroteran, on the Mexican In- 
ternational Railroad, to Laredo, Texas, and thence to Mier, Mexico, on the 
bed of the Gould railroad, graded about ten years ago between these points. 
The government has modified its tax on minerals, which now amounts to 
5 per cent of the value of silver and gold. It is divided into a federal 
stamp tax of 3 per cent and a coinage tax of 2 per cent. Mexican smelters 
operating under governmental concessions are not liable for the coinage 
tax on silver extracted from low-grade lead and copper ores. 

CENTRAL AMERICA 

XrcAR.vGUA. A telegraph line has been built between Acoyapa and 
Rama. The work on the railway between Rama and San Ubaldo, 178 
miles, began July 28, 1895, and should be completed in two years. 

Tiie Nicaraguan government has extended its monopoly of irative dis- 
tilled spirits to its Atlantic coast districts, except to the free port of San 
Juan, and imposes corresponding duties on foreign spirits. 

SOUTH AMERICA 

The Emperor of Brazil once gave a concession to an Englishman to 
ojien the channel connecting the Orinoco with the Amazon, and the latter 
was to have the exclusive right to navigate the waters for a term of 
twenty-five years as a reward for his enterprise, but for some reason or 
another the contract was not carried out. 

The bronze statue of George Washington erected by Guzman Blanco at 
Caracas is believed to be the only statue of the Father of his Country 
outside the United States. The inscription upon it states that Washing- 
ton “ Filled one world with his lienefits and all worlds with his name,” a 
unique tribute to his greatness that was probably written by Blanco 
himself. 

DumsG the visit of Bolivar to the United States he spent a day at Alount 
A'ernon, where, placing his hands reverently upon the cotfin of AVasli- 
ington, he made a solemn vow to devote his life tn the liberation of his 
country. Reaching his native land, he became active in the revolutionary 
propaganda and soon had to seek refuge in Europe. Fifteen years later, 
however, after a struggle to which that of our revolutionary fathers offered 
no comparison, he sat in the capital of Bogota, the fimnder of five rejmb- 
lics — A'enezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Ihdivia — the last having 
been named in his honor. At that time tlie states were con.soli<lated 
under a single government, witli Bolivar as president. After having for 
the fourth time l)een electetl president he was driven fnjin the country 
and died in exile. 


90 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


On the upper Orinoco, during the struggle of Venezuela for independ- 
ence, occurred the only naval battle that was ever fought on horseback. 
Bolivar, at the liead of his army, had been trying to cross for several 
weeks, but was prevented b}' several Spanish gunijoats that moved up and 
down the stream as he did. Becoming exasperated. General Paez one 
niglit spurred his horse into the stream, followed by three thousand 
llaueros, or cowboys, whose horses had been taught to swim as well as to 
gallop. Tlie Sj)anish fleet was taken entirely unawares. The llaneros 
clambered from their saddles to the decks of the vessels and let their 
houses swim back to shore alone. Thus, after cutting off their own re- 
treat, it was a question of win or die, and so desperately did they fight 
that every vessel was captured. 

The Ceiba railroad, in Venezuela, originally 80 miles long, has been ex- 
tended from i\[endoza eastward a distance of 82 miles, to connect with 
the branch from Valera, 15 miles long. Another line is under construc- 
tion from Encoutrados to La Fria, 62 miles. It is intended to extend 
the road 25 miles farther to San Cristobal, the commercial center of a 
great agricultural section. Contracts have been made also for railroad 
lines from iNIaracaibo to Perijaaud from Lake Maracaibo to Carora. The 
former is to be bnilt within two years and the latter within five. 

ASIA 

SvKr.v. The first railway was oi:>ened August 8, 1895, under French 
management. It extends from Beirut to Damascus, a distance of 91 miles. 

China. M. Berthelot, French Foreign Minister, says that the Franco- 
Chinese treaty opens to French trade a region containing 100,000,000 
inhabitants. Its capital is Chung-king. 

Persia. Concessions have been granted to Herr Moral to construct a 
carriage road from Teheran to Bagdad, and a steam or electric railway 
from Teheran to villages 10 miles north. A Russian company has been 
granted a concession to construct a harbor at Enzeli. 

Japan. The sum of §18,000,000 has been voted for a double-track rail- 
way to be built between Tokyo and Kobe, 876 miles, passing through 
Yokohama, Kyoto, and Osaka. Previously 29 concessions had been 
grauteil, covering 2, 193 miles, of which 1,549 miles have been opened. 
Of state railways, 580 miles have been completed and 398 miles are in 
course of construction. 

India. The efforts of Mr A. F. iMummery and three others, in August, 
1895, to explore the Naiiga Parbat region of the Himalaya mountains 
ended in the death of the leader and two Gurkha soldiers. Mummery 
was turned back, by the illness of a Gurkha, at the height of 20,000 feet 
on the main peak of Nanga Parbat. Later, Mummery and the two 
soldiers were lost while exploring a side glacier, being presumably buried 
under an avalanche. 

The ^Mekong. The French are raj^idly developing the region lately 
ceded by Siam. A telegraph line is to be constructed from Attopeu, the 
center of the Nam-Kong gold district, and post-ofiices are also being es- 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


91 


tablished. Steamers will soon be plying on the Mekong. That river has 
been found navigable for 1,500 miles. Lient. Simon, in the French gun- 
boat, La Grandi^re, steamed 900 miles, from Stnng-Treng to Lnang- 
Prabang, and reports that at high water the rapids are navigable to 
Kiang-kong, 220 miles higher up the stream. 

SiBERi,\. Last summer the veteran Arctic skipper. Captain Wiggins, 
took 400 tons of English merchandise up the Yenisei to within 180 miles 
of Yeniseisk. The Russian government admitted the goods free, so as to 
encourage navigation to Siberia by way of the Arctic ocean. 

The completion of the Trans-Siberian railway seems to be assured by 
the negotiation in Berlin of three Russian railway loans, aggregating 
$5.5,000,000. Whether Russia has secured from China authority to cross 
iManchuria to an ice-free port is yet a mooted question. 

AFRICA 

Asuanti. a telegraph line is being constructed from the coast to the 
interior, along the principal trade route. 

Egypt. A geological survey, to be completed within three years at a 
cost of £25,000, has been sanctioned by the Khedive. It will be carried 
out under the direction of Capt. Lyons, R. E. 

Abyssinia. The Italian army is con.structing a good military road 
between Adowa, Adigrat, and Makaleh. An administration is being estab- 
lished, with a view to jiromoting colonization. 

Kongo Free State. According to the statements of the Rev. John B. 
5Iurphy, an American Baptist missionary, who speaks from an experience 
of several years, the authorities of the Free State are committing shock- 
ing barbarities in connection with the exploitation of the rubber trade. 
Tlie natives, as fer as practicable, are abandoning the Belgian for French 
territory, where they are well treated. 

South Africa. Tlie delimitation of the railway stri^i on tlie eastern 
frontier of Bechuanaland is in progress, the survey being made by Colonel 
Goold-Adams. Tliis delimitation is made under an agreement with the 
native chiefs regarding the extension of tlie railway to IMatabeleland. 
Tlie railway company surrenders a subsidy of $1,000,000 for land grants, 
enhanced police powers, etc., which insures its future control of the trade 
routes to this region. The Natul-Transvaal railway is now in operation 
as far as between Durban and Heidelberg, and the section from the latter 
jioint to Johannesburg is in process of construction. The heavy spring 
rains have postponed the opening of the through railway .service from 
Natal to the Rand. The Transvaal is now served liy three lines, the 
otliers l)(*ing the Cape and Free State and the Delagoa bay. Telegraph 
communication between Cape Town and the East Coast is now continu- 
ous, through tlie opening of the line lietween Unitali and Beira. The 
necessity of concmtiiig measures to prevent the utter extinction of the 
.\frican eleiihant is again being urged. It is said that tin* Cermaiis are 
taking stejis to protect the few herds remaining in Cernian ti-rritory, and 
it is to be lioiicd that the British colonial authorities will lose no time in 
following their exanqile. 


THE VALLEY OF THE ORINOCO 
By T. H. Gignilliat 
Uniled States War Department 

In the map of the valleys of the Orinoco and Esequibo rivers, showing 
Venezuela and British Guiana (Plate V), the territorj' between the shaded 
area and the Corentyn river shows the extent of British Guiana as 
given in a map published by William Fadon, Geographer to His Majesty, 
January 1, 1820. This country, acquired by the English through con- 
quest and formally ceded to them by the Butch in 1814, then contained 
sqrne 20,000 square miles. 

The lighter portion of the shaded territory shows the first extension of 
British Guiana to the west after Fadon’s map of 1820. This expansion 
appears on a map published in London in 1840 by Robert H. Schomburgk, 
which included the light-shaded area above mentioned, about 40,000 
square miles. Schomburgk held an English commission to draw the 
boundary line, but it does not appear that Venezuela was represented in 
t he survey. The darker j)ortion of the shaded territoiy shown on Plate V 
represents the subsequent extension of British Guiana, as shown by a 
series of many recent publications. Since 1840, maps and other publica- 
tions have appeared, drawing line after line farther to the west, until 
some 49,000 sfpiare miles have been added to Schomburgk’s acquisition. 
In this way the area of British Guiana has increased from about 20,000 
square miles, as shown on the Fadon map of 1820, to 109,000 square miles, 
the area given in the Statesman’s Year-Book of 1895. 

Gold was discovered in a new section of this area, to the northwest, in 
1884, and an official Venezuelan report places the gold output of this sec- 
tion in 18!)0 at $1,000,000. But there is a larger interest at stake than all 
this territory, with all its gold. It is the control of the valley of the 
Orinoco, an area of about fl00,000 square miles, which comprises a very 
large i)ortion of South America north of the Amazon river. 

It is not generally known that the best entrance to the Orinoco river 
is within the original Schomburgk line. Dr !Munoz Tebar, the successor 
of Senor Jos6 Andrade as president of the state of Zulia, Venezuela, 
states, after a personal examination, that the best entrance to the Orinoco 
river is through the Guaima river and Mora passage to the Barium river, 
and thence to the Orinoco. Authorities aj^pear to agree that the other 
mouths of the Orinoco are shallow and obstructed by sand bars. Dr 
Tebar gives the depth of the Mora passage as over 60 feet, and would lead 
us to infer that there was no bar at the entrance of the Guaima. If this 
means that there is a clear channel over 60 feet from the sea through the 
iMora passage to the Orinoco river, it is a most important piece of infor- 
mation. The square black marks in this locality show the position of 
English trading stations, established between 1885 and 1887. 

Iti addition to the authorities above quoted, the “ commercial ” map of 
F. Bianconi, Paris, 1888, was used in compiling the map on Plate V. 


92 


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-f ^ 

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45 


A. W. QREELY 


Honorary Associate Editors ' j 

W JiJHcOEE -ELIZ^RUHAMAH SCIDilORE 


CONTENTS 


WILLI/aM H. QAtiL 
GEN. A. W. GREELY 


THE SO-CALLED "JEANNETTE RELICS.” 

NANSEN’S POLAR EXPEDITION. 

With portrait of Dr. Nansen. 

THE SUBMARINE CABLES OP THE WORLD. 

^ With chart 

PETER COOPER AND SUBMARINE TELEGRAPHY. 

THE RUSSO-AMERICAN TELEGRAPH PROJECT OF 1864-’67. 

WILLIAM H. DALL 

THE SURVEY AND SUBDIVISION OF INDIAN TERRITORY. 

With map and illustration HENRY GANNETT 

"FREE BURGHS” IN THE UNITED STATES. JAMES H BLODGETT 
Proceedings of The NaUonal Geographic Society, p. 122 ; Miscellanea, p. 124. 


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THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

VoL. VII MARCH, 1896 No. 3 


THE SO-CALLED “JEANNETTE RELICS” 

By Profe.ssor William H. Dall 

Aluch interest lias been excited by the recent rumor that news 
had Ijeen received from Nansen, via Siberia. In discussing the 
rumor I mentioned that the supposed relics of the Jeannette found 
off Julianehaab, in Greenland, were in all probability in no way 
connected with the Jeannette expedition, but were due to a boy- 
ish prank of some of the members of the Greely relief expedition 
of 1884. In attempting to formulate his impressions of an inter- 
view with me during which the subject was discussed, and wbicli 
were not revised li}'’ me, the reporter unfortunately fell into some 
inaccuracies, not unnatural inajierson unfamiliar with the tech- 
nicalities of arctic exploration, but for which the telegrams to 
the press made me responsible. It seems desirable, therefore, 
to lay before tbose interested in such matters a statement of the 
facts bearing on the two questions involved, namely. Were the 
relics really derived from the Jeannette expedition? and, if not, 
were they the result ofa mystification, as above suggested ? 'fhe 
first is of course the only one of importance to geographers, for 
if the relics were spurious it matters but little whence tbey were 
derived, 'fhe facts are now in order. 

1. The Jeannette Hnwk .lune 11, 1881, in the .Arctic sea, about 
180 miles northwest from the New Siberian islands. 

2. 'fhe Greely relief exi)edition of 1881 reached the coast of 
Greenland in May; the Hear met the pack ice near Godliavn 
about .May 13; the Thetis i\\n\ Loch (iarri/, May 22; the . l/c?'G)n 


7 


94 


THE SO-CALLED “JEANNETTE RELICS 


June 5. The latter left Godhavn June 9 and reached Upernivik 
June 13. 

3. On June 18 some Eskimo found on the surface of an ice 
floe off Julianehaab, in southwest Greenland, some articles, which 
were turned over to the Danish officer in charge of that settle- 
ment, Herr Lytzen, who sent them to a friend in Copenhagen. 
Tliese comprised, among other things, some broken biscuit boxes, 
a pair of oilskin trousers, said to have been marked Louis Noros 
(tlie name of one of the Jeannette survivors, who was a member 
of tlie Greely relief expedition of 1884), and a number of written 
jiapers, especially a list of tlie boats of the Jeannette^ and a list of 
provisions signed by De Long, the commander of the Jeannette 
expedition, and stated to be entirely in his or a single hand- 
writing. 

4. The Greely relief expedition left Greenland from Godhavn 
July 9, without toucliing at Julianehaab. 

5. In the latter part of the winter of 1884-’85 a Danish corre- 
spondent wrote to Dr Emil Bessels, formerly of the Polaris ex- 
pedition and a well-known arctic expert, at Washington, stating 
that news of these various relics had been received in Copenhagen 
and requesting his opinion as to their authenticity. The sub- 
stance of this letter was communicated to me by Dr Bessels, who 
was much interested in the find, as, if genuine, it obviously fur- 
nished important data toward a knowledge of the drift in the 
polar regions. The presence in Washington during 1885 of man}^ 
members of the relief expedition, in connection with the various 
investigations Avhich followed their return, enabled Dr Bessels to 
interview many of the seamen as well as their officers and to ac- 
cumulate a large mass of notes from his examination of them. 
On one or two occasions I was invited to be present when some 
of these men called on Dr Bessels. The well-known tendency of 
articles on the surface of ice, under the influence of the sun, to 
sink through it to the level of the water — even such trifles as bird’s 
feathers or dead leaves being rai)idly engulfed, as I have often 
personally noticed — led to doubts as to the possibility of the ar- 
ticles mentioned having remained on the surface of the ice for 
three years during a drift of 3,000 miles, exposed to the elements. 
The possibility of the preservation of written papers under such 
conditions seemed almost incredible. The close approximation 
of the dates of the presence of the relief exjiedition on the west 
Greenland coast and that of the finding of the relics was also 
suspicious. The testimony of the seamen interviewed was, in 


95 


THE SO-CALLED '‘JEANNETTE RELICS'^ 

brief, to the effect tliat tlie presence of Jeannette survivors on the 
relief expedition liad sut^gested to some one the possiljility of 
producing a sensation in the fleet which for some time followed 
the foremost vessels; that in a spirit of boyish levity this hoax 
W'as conceived and carried out, with no intention of serious de- 
ception or thought of the possible consequences. No names were 
mentioned and the evidence was to the effect that a general im- 
I)re.ssion prevailed among the men that some such })rank had 
been played rather than that any particular man questioned was 
personally cognizant of the act. Dr Bessels gathered an amount 
of evidence tending to support this hypothesis, which he showed 
me and which covered forty or fifty pages of foolscap. This 
record was afterward burned, tvith his library and other papers, 
in a fire which destroyed his residence at Glendale, D. C. In 
consequence Dr Bessels communicated to his Euro]iean corre- 
spondents his belief that the relics were fictitious and the result 
of a hoax. I stated to Dr Rink and others who inquired of me 
the same conclusions. 

6. In 1888 Dr Nansen made his celebrated journey across 
Greenland and presumaldy heard of the relics there. Before his 
return, Dr Bessels died in Germany, where he had taken up his 
residence. Up to this time either the doul)ts which had been 
thrown on the authenticity of the relics, or some other reason, 
had lu’evented them from exciting much interest, and the owner 
seems to have resisted any attempt to verify their authenticity 
by sending photogra|)hs or originals of the i)apers to America 
when requested. The ])aj)ers and other objects were placed in 
a box in a garret and, after the death of the owner, were burned 
as worthless, with the ac({uiescence of the widow. As Herr 
Uytzen had published an account of them (Geogr. Tidskr., viii, 
188 o-’ 88, j)p. 4h-.51 j and the finder and possessor alike acted in 
]»erfect good faith throughout, it is probable that after Dr Bes- 
sels’ opinion was communicated to him. the owner attached no 
great value to the oljects, otherwise his wife could hardly have 
been ignoi-ant of it. 

When Dr Nansen endeavored to examine these objects with 
a view of determining their authenticity, tlu>y were no longer in 
existence.* One of his friends, whost; name has slipped my 
memory and whose letter is temporarily inaccessible, wrote to 
me on Nansen's behalf, as he explained, asking my ojiinion, 


* Sf!C Ui)y. Oeo«. So<!. l’ro<;., Nov. 11, I8ii2, in .lunniul, .Ian., 18!).'l, pp. l-.TJ. 


96 


THE SO-CALLED ^‘JEANNETTE RELICS” 

Avhich Avas sent some time before the starting of Nansen’s latest 
expedition. Baron Nordenskibld was also informed some time 
before Nansen sailed, so that there is no doubt that Nansen was 
cognizant of the fact that the authenticity of the relics Avas seri- 
ously questioned. He had preAuously admitted as much in 
his paper above cited, but did not on that account relax his faith 
in them. 

Conclasiom. — It is evident that the ])roof that the relics Avere 
the result of a hoax is not complete, and. in the nature of things, 
unless the parties actually concerned shall admit it, is never 
likely to be com})leted. Each person Avill form his OAvn opinion 
from the data submitted. I have spent some ten years of my 
life at sea, nearly half of the time in command of a United States 
surveying A^essel, and I am quite aAvare of the nature of sailor 
men and sailors’ evidence. Dr Bessels Avas for years my inti- 
mate and valued friend and associate, and in all our intercourse 
nothing ever occurred to lead me to doulit his earnest endeavor 
to get at the truth of this matter. iNIy oavu conclusions are, first, 
that the relics Avere not authentic, and, second, that they Avere 
probably due to a hoax, as stated above. In' support of the first 
conclusion, beside the data given, the probability that De Long 
himself would be Avriting out receipts for stores is very small. 
There has been since 1818 an average of tAVO or three ships a year 
lost in the ice north of Bering strait, and in the vicinity of the 
point Avhere the Jeannette entered the pack. Not a single relic 
of all the enormous fleet of oA'er one hundred Avrecks has ever 
been identified on the Greenland coast, A\diere AA'ood has ahvays 
been of the greatest value. Driftwood from northern rivers is 
cast up on the Greenland coast more or less every year, hut there 
is no evidence that it comes from points east of Nova Zembla. 
It is not im})ossible that some of it does, but it cannot be- proA^ed. 
Some tAA'enty-odd years ago a throAving-stick, of the pattern used 
at Port Clarence, near Bering strait, came ashore on the coast of 
Greenland, near Godhaab, and Avas presented to the museum at 
Christiania by Dr Rink.* When one remembers hoAV the creAVS 
of Avhaleships collect curios Avhich they carry to all parts of the 
Avorld, and Avhich are often throAvn aAvay or lost in the most un- 
expected places, the certainty that this stick drifted from Port 
Clarence, a distance of not less than 4,000 miles, is evidently not 
to be taken for granted. I have received from lagoons on the 


*Cf. Qeog. Tidskr., ix, No. 4, pp. 75-G, Copenhagen, 1887. 


THE SO-CALLED ^^JEANNETTE EELLCS” 


97 


west side of tlie peninsula of Lower California, formerly fre- 
quented by whalers, marine shells unquestionably of north 
European origin, Bnccinum nndatum especialhq which is not 
known in the Pacific at all, and I have also received Indo-Pacific 
species, as well as cocoanut shells, collected by John Murdoch, 
from the shores of the Arctic ocean, north of Bering strait. That 
the drift of the Jeannette was due to the i)revalent winds is be- 
yond question, as already shown by Melville, and as may be 
worked out by anybody from the data. That, if continued, it 
would have passed across the Pole, as argued by Nansen, is a 
pure assumption, though a veiy enticing one. Certainly no one 
interested in arctic work but must most heartily wish that that 
courageous explorer may succeed in proving his hypothesis and 
return in safety to claim the laurels his success would earn. 

In regard to the second point, that of the origin of the so-called 
relics, if regarded as fictitious, I have already stated my conclu- 
sion that the story of the hoax seems sufficient to account for 
tliem. To Ije perfect!}’’ impartial, however, one must admit that 
the currents about southwest Greenland are such that objects set 
adrift on the ice from any great distance to the northward of 
Julianehaab would usually be set over to the westward rather 
than in shore, although tliis general rule is subject to exceptions, 
due to strong westerly winds. This fact alone I suspect was suf- 
ficient to satisfy Nansen, whose hypothesis was already framed ; 
ljut it must be remembered that the Greenland current does not 
round cape Farewell with equal strength at all seasons of the 
year; that the advent of the relief expedition was excei)tionally 
early ; the inllux into Baffin’s bay had not l)egun,and that along 
such a coast as that of Greenland eddies and reverse currents 
cannot fail to occur. W'hile not without weight, I cannot assign 
to Nansen’s objection sufficient weight to overcome the other in- 
dications, which f(jr me, at least, lead to the conclusion that the 
so-called Jeannette relics have not l)een shown to have any certain 
connection with the Jeannette expedition. Furthermore, there 
is no certainty that tlie ,\laskan throwing-stick was l»rought to 
the coast of Greenland Ijy oceanic currents, and even if it was, 
the time occupied in the transit and the route are alike abso- 
lutely unknown, so that speculations as to a drift across the 
region of the I’ole receive from this incident no ))ositive con- 
tirmation. 

Ailmiral Sir E. Inglefield, the distinguished Arctic traveler, at 
the meeting of the Koval ( !eogra|)hical Society called to discuss 


08 


NANSEX’S POLAR EXPEDITION 


Nansen’s plans, told of finding a fresh stick of Siberian pine, 
with the bark still upon it and which seemed to have been only 
a few months in the water, on the west shore of Wellington 
channel, which enters Baffin’s hay from the west.* If such a 
tree could l^e carried eastward in a few months from Siberia to 
a [)oint accessible by ships from Baffin’s bay, why is it not more 
))robable that this throwing-stick, lost near Port Clarence, was 
carried north and east by the well-known northeasterly shore 
current ])ast point Barrow and so on to Baffin’s bay and the 
Greenland coast? 

At this meeting such Arctic authorities as Admiral Sir George 
Nares, Cai)tain Wharton, Hydrogra])her II. N., ex-Hydrographer 
Sir George Bichards, K. N., and Sir Joseph Hooker united in the 
opinion that nothing was known about the direction or exist- 
ence of sea currents in the region Nansen ho})ed to traverse, and 
that all o[)inions in regard to them must l)e purely speculative. 
The doubtful character of the so-called Jeannette relics was also 
distinctl}" pointed out.f It cannot be said therefore that Nansen 
])ursued his {)lans in ignorance of the doubtful elements of his 
hyi)othesis, but rather that his courage, energ}", and audacity 
were such that he was willing to risk everything to put his specu- 
lations to a final test. 


NANSEN’S POLAR EXPEDITION 

By General A. W. Greely, 

Chief Signal Officer, United States Armij 

The continuing interest of the unsolved polar mystery has 
been strikingly illustrated by the eagerness with which the press 
of the world has caught at every word that seems to indicate 
the success and safety of the brave Norwegian in his dangerous 
drift- voyage toward the north ])ole. , 

Dr Fridtjof Nansen, born in 1861, became famous by cross- 
ing, first of all men, the inland ice of Greenland in 1888 from 
Umivik, 64° 45' north, on the east coast, to Kangersunek fiord, 50 
miles south of Godthaab. Later, he conceived a novel and 
dangerous }>lan for polar work. Ignoring the accepted rules of 

* Geographical Journal, Jan., 1893, p. 25. 
t Op. cit., pp. 22-32. 



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SHOWING ROUTES TRAVERSED BY THE NANSEN EXPEDITION 




NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XI 



DR FRIDTJOF NANSEN 





XAXSEy’S POLAR EXPEDITIOX 


99 


ice navigation — of avoiding besetment and following the pro- 
tected lee of land-masses — he decided to put his ship into the 
ice to the north of the New Siberian islands, whence he believed 
that he would be carried by ocean currents across the pole to 
the Spitzhergen sea. His steamer, Frnm, 125 feet long, with an 
oak hull 30 inches thick and sheathed with greenheart, was built 
so as to rise under ice jn-essure, as he claimed. The crew of twelve 
were provisioned for five years, though he expected, by a drift of 
a little over two miles per day, to reach the Atlantic in two years. 
No explorer of experience endorsed the plan, but with undaunted 
courage Nansen sailed June 24, 1S93, and entering the sea of 
Kara was last seen to the east of Nova Zernbla in September, 1893. 
He visited neither the Taimur peninsula nor the New Siberian 
islands, as events have since shown. 

Fehruaiy 13, 1896, a dispatch from Irkutsk, on the authority 
of Konchnareff, an agent of Nansen, stated that the explorer, 
having reached land-masses at the North Pole, was now returning. 
Two days later a dispatch from Archangel confirmed the first re- 
port in general terms onl3^ From the beginning no credit was 
given to these dispatches by any American arctic explorer or 
student. Melville, Schutze, Dali, and the writer were strenuous in 
disbelief, hut the story was credited by scores of persons, both 
in Europe and this country, who did not find it peculiar that a 
story from the center of Asia was confirmed from the north of 
Europe, nor were surprised that such news came from the Si- 
berian ocean in midwinter. Through the Norwegian press Nan- 
sen’s relatives announce their disbelief in this rumor. 

As to the drift-relics found on the west coast of Greenland, 
which were relied on by Nansen as practical proof that his theory 
of a drift voyage was correct, it may he said tliat Melville, the 
man best qualified to speak about the Jeannette, denied at the 
time their genuineness and endeavored without avail to have 
them brought to this country. The writer puhlicl}’^ called Nan- 
sen’s attention to this question, which for the first time seems to 
have created doubts in his mind. Nansen made efforts to find 
the relics for verification, but they had disa])])eared in toto. 

\Vhile Nansen’s journey is (‘.xceedingly dangerous, it would 
not he astfjuishing if ho was able to return from his ship, if it 
was lost Sf)uth of 81° north, to the Asiatic coast, hut if he really 
a])|)roached the North Polo, as is po.ssil)le, before his ve.ssel was 
destroyed, it is .safe to say that he will i>ay for an une(pial(‘d 


100 


jXANSEmY’S polar expedition 


latitude with his life and carry the secret of his well-earned suc- 
cess to his grave. 

The numerous errors lately set forth in the i)ress indicate the 
need of accurate data relative to latitudes attained. - 

Tlie tendency to unfairly present data in the interests of indi- 
viduals or nations is of con.stant occurrence, and it is not sur- 
prising that the general pnlhic should l)e unfamiliar with all the 
hicts. This is especially true in Arctic matters, as is shown by 
the North Polar chart in “ The Times Atlas,” 1895, so much 
lauded for its fullness and accuracy. On this chart the highest 
north of the German, Swedish, and Plnglish (Parry’s, 1827) ex- 
])editions is so described in full lyv text and latitudes. In the 
case of Beaumont, the English explorer, his latitude is given as 
82° 54' north, which is 33 miles too far north, and his record is 
s])read on the maj) above that of Lockwood, while the last- 
named explorer, who actually made' the highest north ever 
attained, has not even his latitude entered. In this remarkable 
case o( s>(j>prcnsio vert an American explorer loses his nationality^ 
his latitude, and his hard-earned record, all other nationalities 
having their data entered in full. 

Under these conditions it seems to he rendering a geograph- 
ical service to reproduce here a table extracted from a “ Hand- 
book of Arctic Discovery,” written by myself. 


Reconix of the IPojhext North )nadr sinre 15S7 in the Eaxtern and Western 
llemixpheres Inj Ltnid and Inj Sea.* 

E.\STEUN I tE.MI.SeilERE. 


Coniniander. 

Date. 

N. lat. 

Long. 

Locality. 

AVilliani Barents . . 

July 14, 1594 

77° 20' 

62° E. 

Xear cape Xa.ssan, 
X. Z. 

Ryp and Ileeins- 
kerek (Barents’ 
third vovage). 

June 19, 159(i 

79° 49' 

12° E. 

X. Spitzbergen. 

1 lenrv Iliulson .... 

July 13, 1()07 

80° 23' 

10° E. 

S])itzbergen sea. 

ii ii 

J. C. Phipps 

Julv 27, 1773 

80° 48' 

20° E. 

William Seoresbv. . 

Alav 24, 180() 

81° 30' 

19° E. 

U U 

W. E. Pan v 

July 23. 1827 

82° 45' 

20° E. 

“ “ 

Nordenskiold anil 
Otter. 

Sept. 19, 1808 

81° 42' 

18° E. 

Si)itzbergen sea, 
highest by ship. 

AVeyprecht and 
Payer. 

April 12, 1874 

82° 05' 

O 

O 

Franz Josef Land, 
by Payer, highest 
land. 


* Notk.— T his table is reproduced by permission of Roberts Broiliers, Publisliers. 


KAXSEN’S POLAR EXPEDITION 


101 


Western Hemisphere. 


Commander. 

Date. 

N. lat. 

Long. 

Locality. 

John Davis 

June 30, 1587 

72° 12^ 

56° AV. 

AA'. Greenland. 

Henry H udson .... 

June 20, 1607 

73° 

20° AV. 

Off E. Greenland. 

William Baffin .... 

July 4, 1616 

77° 45' 

72° AV. 

Smith sound. 

E. A. Inglefleld., . . 

Aug. 27, 1852 

78° 21' 

74° AV. 

Smith sound. 

E. K. Kane 

June 24, 1854 

80° 10' 

67° AV. 

Cape Constitution, 
Greenland, by 
Alorton. 

C. F. Hall 

Aug. 30, 1870 

82° 11' 

61° AV. 

Frozen sea. 

C. F. Hall 

June 30, 1871 

82° 07' 

59° AV. 

Greenland, by Ser- 
geant Aleyer, Sig- 
nal Corps, U. S. 
Armv. 

G. S. Nares 

Sept. 25, 1875 

82° 48' 

65° AV. 

Grinnell Land, by 
Aldrich. 

G. S. Nares 

May 12, 1876 

83° 20' 

65° AV. 

Frozen sea, by A. 
II. Markham. 

A. AV. Greely 

May 13, 1882 

83° 24' 

41° AV. 

New Land, north 
of Greenland, by 
Lockwood and 
Brainard. 


Doiiljtless the name of some whaler should follow that of Baffin 
in the above list, but the inexactitude of most high latitudes re- 
ported by whalers is well known. Possibly the re})orted north- 
ing of Lambert, 78^ degrees north, in 1G70, on the east Greenland 
coast, may have exceeded Ingiefield’s exact latitude of 78° 21'. 

Sweden holds the ship^s record in the old world, but Parry beat 
it by boats. It will be noted that England held the honors of 
the farthest north through Hudson, 1607 ; Phipps, 1773; Parry, 
1827, and Nares, by Aldrich, 1875, and by Markham, 1876. This 
record, unlu’oken for 275 years, ]iassed to the United States 
through the efforts of the International Polar Expedition, under 
Lieutenant Greely, which, liy Lockwood and Brainard, reached 
83° 24', the most northerly point, whether on sea or land, ever 
attained by man, which Nansen or .lackson may jiossibly exeeb 

Aiming other Ingh latitudes attained, but not pertinent to this 
tal)le, are the following: Ha}’es, about 80° 10', in 1861 ; .Tack- 
son, 81° 20', in 18‘.15 ; Peary, 81° 37', in 1801 and 1805; Beau- 
mont, 82° 21', in 1876; Pavey (with Greely), 82° 54', in 1882, 
and .Aldrich, 83° 07', in 1876. 


THE SUBMARINE CABLES OF THE WORLD 


By Gustave Herrle 

The English give Professor (afterward Sir) Charles MTieat- 
stone the credit of being the originator of submarine cables, that 
gentleman having laid before the House of Commons in 1840 a 
sclieme for the laying of a telegraph cable across the channel 
between Dover and Calais, but his plans do not seem to have 
been fully matured. 

In tlie United States, in 1842, Professor S. F. B. INIorse experi- 
mented witli a sulmiarine cable l^etween Castle Garden and 
Governor’s island, New York harbor, and a year later, in detail- 
ing the results of his exi)eriments with an electro-magnetic tele- 
graph in a letter to the then Secretary of the Treasury, J. C. 
Spencer, he said : 

. . . The i>ractical inference from this law is that a tele' 

grai^hic communication on the electro-magnetic plan may with 
certainty be established across the Atlantic. Startling as this 
may seem now, I am confident the time will come when this 
project will l^e realized.” . . . 

It was not, however, until 1850 that the first submarine cable 
in the open sea was laid. This was the cable across the channel 
between Dover and Calais. It was made of copper wire, covered 
with gutta-percha to half an inch in diameter, the shore ends of 
the wire being doubly covered with cotton, overlaid Avith a coat- 
ing of India rubber, and the whole inclosed in a thick lead pipe. 
This cable did not work successfully, on account of defective in- 
sulation, and had to be aljandoned. Another authority states 
that telegraphic communication was maintained for a few hours, 
Avhen it Avas suddenly interrupted, the cause being, as AA'as after- 
Avards discovered, the cutting of the cable by a French fisher- 
man, who, it is said, exhibited a piece of it to the astonished 
})eoj)le of a neighl)oring town as a rare specimen of sea-Aveed Avith 
its center filled Avith gold. Be that as it may, to guard against 
such casualities tlie ucav cable, laid in the folloAving year (1851), 
betAveen Dover and Calais, Avas made much stronger, consisting 
of a wire insulated Avith gutta-percha and forming a core to a 
Avire rope as a jirotector. This calde Avas an entire success, arid. 


102 


THE SUBMARINE CABLES OF THE WORLD 


103 


• as a consequence, the establishment of a number of short sub- 
marine cables in Europe and America followed shortly afterward. 

In 1854, Mr C}wus W. Field, whose memory will ever be dear 
to the liearts of Americans, took up, in compan}'’ with American 
and English capitalists, the project to connect Europe and 
America b}’- a submarine cable, and on August 7, 1857, the lay- 
ing of the first Atlantic cable was begun by the U. S. frigate 
Xiagara, which sailed from Valentia, Ireland, in the direction of 
Heart’s Content, Newfoundland. When about 400 miles had 
been laid, the cable broke and the steamer returned. In the 
following 3 ’ear, 1858, the attempt was renewed, H. ]\I. S. Aga- 
memnon, with one portion of the cable, and the U. 8. frigate 
Xiagara, with the other portion, meeting in mid-ocean, in about 
latitude 52° 02' north, longitude 33° 18' west, to splice the cable 
there, and then to lay it, one shi]) sailing eastward and the other 
westward. In this attempt also the cable broke and the steam- 
ers returned to port, but a sufficient length of cable being left, 
another attempt was made later in the year and the laying was 
successful!}^ accomplished over the whole distance. America and 
Europe were united by telegraphic communication on August 5, 
and congratulatory messages were exchanged between the two 
continents. This is what the Queen of England telegraplied to 
the President of the United States : 

“The Queen desires to congratulate the President upon the successful 
completion of this great international work, in which the Queen has 
taken the deepest interest. The Queen is convinced that the President 
will join with her in ferventl}'^ hoping that the electric cable which now 
connects Great Britian with the United States will prove an additional 
link between the nations whose friendship is founded upon their common 
interest and reciprocal esteem. The Queen has much pleasure in com- 
municating with the President, and renewing to him her wishes for the 
prosperity of the United States.” 

4'o this President Buchanan replied as follows : 

“The President cordially reciprocates the congratulations of Her IMajesty 
the Queen on the success of the great international enterprise aci’om- 
plished l)y the science, skill, and indomitable enersry of the two countries. 
It is a triumph more glorious, because far more useful to mankind, than 
was ever won Ijy comiueror on the field of battle. }Iay the .Atlantic tele- 
graph, nniler the blessing of Heaven, ])rove to b(‘ a bond of perp(>tual 
peace ami friendship between the kindred nations, and an instrument 
destineil l>y Divine Providenc-e to dilfuse religion, civilization, liberty, 
and law throughout the world. In this view will not all nations of 
f’hristendom spontaneously unite in the declaration that it shall lu- for- 
ever neutral, and that its communications shall be held sacred in passing 
to their places of destination, even in the midst of hostilities?” 


104 


THE SUBMARINE CABLES OF THE ^YORLD 


liut, alas, the joy over the greatest triumph of the age was des- 
tined to be of short duration. In less than a month the cable 
refused to work, owing to some fault the nature of which could 
not be definitel}'’ ascertained. It was at last abandoned in de- 
spair, and no further attempt to lay another one was made until 
18(>4, when the Atlantic Telegraph Company made with the 
Telegraph Construction and INIaintenance Company a contract 
for a new cable between Valentia and Heart’s Content and char- 
tered the steamship Great Eastern to lay it. This cable was 2,273 
nautical miles* long, and its weight was 300 pounds per mile. 
Its laying down commenced on July 23, 1865, Mr Cyrus W. Field 
being on board the ship, but on August 2, after about 1,400 knots 
had been paid out, the cable parted and the broken end disap- 
peared from view. The Great Eastern remained near the scene 
of the accident until August 11, when she gave up the attempt 
to recover the cable and returned to Europe. Thus another 
hope, another aspiration, was buried, and we may well imagine 
the feelings of those who had put their faith and their money 
into the undertaking. 

The story of this attempt and of the successful recovery of 
the lost cable a year later by means of grapnels from a depth of 
over 2,000 fathoms forms one of the most interesting chapters in 
the histoiy of submarine telegra])hy ; but after all the disheart- 
ening failures which had attended the laying of the first three 
Atlantic cal)les, the indomitable pluck and energ}’^ of iNIr Field 
and his associates were to be finally rewarded with success. A 
new cable was ordered, and on July 13, 1866, the Great Eastern 
again started from Valentia and, without further serious mis- 
hap, finished the ia^ung over the whole distance on July 27, 
when the cable was spliced to the shore end at Heart’s Content. 
IMoreover, on September 1 following, the Great Eastern recovered 
the lost cable of the previous year, spliced it to the cable on 
board, and completed the laying of it toward Heart’s Content, 
thus establishing a duplicate line. Ever since that time we have 
had uninterrupted telegraphic connection Avith Europe, and this 
1866 cable thus became the pioneer of the long-distance, deep- 
sea cables. 

Immense progress has since been made in the establishment 
of submarine telegraph lines. A fieet of between thirt}'’-five and 
forty steamers, specially constructed and equi})ped for cable 

*A nautical mile, as defined by the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, equals 
6,080.27 feet, or 1.1516 statute miles. 


THE SUBMARINE CABLES OF THE WORLD 


105 


service, sprang into existence, and the present total length of 
the submarine cables of the world is, in round numbers, 160,000 
nautical miles, or enough to girdle the earth seven and one-half 
times at the equator. At an average cost of SI, 200 per mile, the 
entire system represents an outlay of $192,000,000. Of the total 
mileage about one-eighth is under the control of various national 
governments. 

The Hydrographic Office issued, in 1892, a book on Sub- 
marine Cables,” prepared by Mr G. W. Littlehales as a part of 
the report of that Office on the survey made by the U. S. shij)S 
Albatross and Thetis for an ocean cable route between San Fran- 
cisco and Honolulu. It contains a large amount of interesting 
infonnation, including valuable statistical data, among which is 
a complete list of the Submarine' Cables of the world, in detail. 
The tallies being much too voluminous for publication in these 
pages, the following list of the more important cables has been 
compiled from them, the reader being referred to the original 
report for information concerning the shorter cables and for 
more complete data generally : 

CABLES OVER FOUR HUNDRED NAUTICAL MILES LONG, OPERATED 
BY GOVERNMENTS. 

France; Mar.seille.s to Algiers, 3 cables, 488, 496, and 500; Teneriffe to 
St. Louis, Senegal, 865. 

Cochin China and Tonkin: Cape St. James to Thuan-An (Hue), 5.30. 

British India: 5Ianora to Jask, 531; Jask to Biishire, 2 cables, 519 
and .500. 

CABLES OVER FOUR HUNDRED NAUTICAL MILES LONG, OWNED BY 

PRIVATE COMPANIES ; ALSO TOTAL LENGTH OF CABLES OPERATED 

BY EACH CO.MPANY. 

Direct .Spanish Telegraph Company, total, 708: Kennack Cove, Corn- 
wall, to Las Arenas, near Bilbao, 487. 

Halifax and Bermuda Cable Company: Halifax, N. S., t<j Hamilton, 
Bermuda, 8.50. 

Spanish National Submarine Telegra[)h Company, total, 2,1.59 : Cadiz to 
Santa Cruz d(; Tenerille, 8(i4 ; Tejita, Tenerilfe, to .st. Louis, Senegal, .S(i.5. 

West African Telegraj)!! Company, total, 3,015: Kotonu to St. Thomas, 
486; St. Thomas to Loanda, 760. 

Hreat Northern Telegraph Company, Europe and Asia, hdal, 6,932; 
Newhiggin, England, to .\rendal, Norway, 424 ; New biggin to iMarstrami, 
Sweden, 510; Newbiggin to Ilirtshals, Denmark, 420; Amoy to (lutzlall', 
China, .5!»0 ; Hutzlalfto Nagasaki, .hi|>an, 427 ; (hitzlalfto Nagasaki, 416: 
Nagasaki to Vladivostfick, llussia, 2 cables, 7.53 and 766. 


106 


THE SUBMARINE CABLES OF THE WORLD 


Eastern Telegraph Companj’, total, 27,453: Porthcurno, Land’s End, 
England, to Lisbon, Portugal, 2 cables, iS50 and 892 ; Porthcurno to Vigo, 
Spain, 622; Gibraltar to Malta, 2 cables, 1,118 and 1,126; ^Marseilles, 
France, to Bona, Algeria, 2 cables, 447 and 463; Trieste, Austria, to 
Corfu, 503 ; Malhi to Alexandria, Egypt, 2 cables, 928 and 91 1 ; Suez, 
Egypt, to Suakiin, Soudan, 3 cables, 936, 811, and 811; Suez to Aden, 
794; Suez to Periin Island, 1,331 ; Suakiin to Periin Island, 597 ; Suakim 
to Aden, 2 cables, 794 each; Aden to Bombay, 3 cables, 1,850, 1,859, and 
1 ,885. 

Eastern and South African Telegraph Company, total, 6,796 (increased 
since 1892 to 8,841) : Aden to Zanzibar, 1,909; Zanzibar to ^Mozambique, 
2 cables, 644 and 686 ; ^Mozambique to Louren^o-^Iarques, Delagoa bay, 
970; Cape Town to Port Xolloth, 433 ; Port Xolloth to Mossamedes, 1,052. 

Eastern extension, Australiusia, and China Telegraph Company, total, 
17,342: Madras to Penang, 2 caliles, 1,462 and 1,389; Rangoon to Penang, 
864 ; Singapore to Saigon, Cochin China, 628 ; Haiphong, Tonkin, to Hong- 
kong, 470; Fuchau to Hongkong, 472; Saigon to Hongkong, 990; Saigon 
to Thuan-An, 516; Hongkong to cape Bolinao, island of Luzon, 529 5 
Singapore to Batavia, Java, 541 ; Singapore to Banjuwangi, Java, 921 ; 
Banjuwangi to Port Darwin, Australia, 2 cables, 1,143 and 1,124; Banju- 
wangi to Roebuck bay, Australia, 892; Sydney to Xelson, Xew Zealand, 
2 cables, 1,284 and 1,322; Hongkong to Fuchau, 472; Fuchau to Shang- 
hai, 449. 

Anglo- -Vmerican Telegraph Company, total, 10,400 (increased to 12,290 
since 1892): Valentia, Ireland, to Heart’s Content, Xewfoundland, 3 ca- 
ble.s, 1,84(), 1,881, and 1,899; Minou, France, to St. Pierre, 2,718; St. 
Pierre to Duxbury, ^lassachusetts, 809. 

Direct United States Cable Company, total, 3,099: Ballinskelligs bay, 
Ireland, to Halifax, 2,564; Halifox to Rye Beach, Xew Hampshire, 535. 

Coinjiagnie Fram;aise du Telegraphe de Paris a X"ew York, total, 3,496 5 
Brest to St. Pierre, 2,282; St. Pierre to Cape Cod, .Massachusetts, 828. 

Western Union Telegrajih Company, total, 7,743: Penzance, England, 
to Canso, X'ova Scotia, 2 cables, 2, .531 and 2,576; Canso to Xew York, 2 ca- 
bles, each 888. 

The Commercial Cable Company, total, 6,938 (since increased to 9,075) : 
Havre to Waterville, Ireland, 510; M’atetville to Can.so, 3 cables, 2,138, 
2,3-50, and 2,388; Canso to Xew York, 841; Canso to Rockjiort, Massa- 
chu.setts, 519. 

Brazilian Submarine Telegraph Company, total, 7,369: Lisbon to Ma- 
deira, 2 cables, 627 and 631 ; Madeira to St. Vincent, Cape Verde island, 
2 cables, 1,168 and 1,209; St. Vincent to Pernambuco, Brazil, 2 cables, 
1,862 and 1,872. 

African Direct Telegraph Company, total, 2,746: Santiago to Bathurst, 
471 ; Bathurst to Sierra Leone, 463 ; Sierra Leone to Akkra, 1,020. 

Cuba Submarine Telegraph Company, total, 1,.500: Cienfuegos to San- 
tiago, Cuba, 3 cables, 400, 420, and 420. 

West India and Panama Telegrajih Company, total, 4,557 : Kingston, 
Jamaica, to Colon, Panama isthmus, 630 ; Holland bay to San Juan, Porto 
Rico, 683; Holland bay to Ponce, Porto Rico, 647 ; St. Croix to Port of 
Spain, Trinidad, .541. 


THE SUBMARINE CABLES OF THE WORLD 


107 


Societe Fran^aise Des Telegraphes Sous-Mariiis, total, 3,754 (since in- 
creased to 4,544) : Porto-Plata, Santo Domingo, to Fort de France, Mar- 
tinique, 787 ; Fort de France to Paramaribo, Dutch Guiana, 777 ; Ca}-enne 
to Yizeu, Brazil, 002; Santo Domingo to Curac;ao, 453. 

Western and Brazilian Telegraph Company, total, 3,904 (since increased 
to 0,144): Maranham to Ceara, Brazil, 400; Ceara to Pernambuco, 470; 
Bahia to Rio de Janeiro, 837. 

^lexical! Telegraph Company, total, 1,523: Galveston, Texas, to Tam- 
pico, IMexico, 490 ; Galveston to Coatzacoalcos, Mexico, 822. 

Central and South American Telegraph Company, total, 7,497 : Salina 
Cruz, IMexico, to Libertad, Salvador, 434; San Juan del Sur to Panama, 
721 ; Buenaventura to St. Elena, Ecuador, 480; Paita to Callao-Lima, Peru, 
553 ; Callao-Lima to Icpiique, Chile, 747 ; Iquique to Valparaiso, Chile, 
877. 

AVest Coast of America Telegraph Compan}^ total, 1,099 (since increased 
to 1,904) : Callao-Lima to Mollendo, Peru, 510. 

NOTE ON COMPILATtON OF CHAET. 

This chart (see frontispiece) was comjiiled in the U. S. Hydrographic 
OtHce from the latest information, and is a facsimile of H. 0. chart* No. 
1530, just issued by that Office. 

Tlie twelve cables across tlie North Atlantic ocean were plotted, from 
their terminal points on the American continent to meridian 40° west, from 
positions furnished by the re.spective cable companies, with the excejition 
of three — the Western Union of 1881 and 1882 and the Mackay-Bennett 
of 1894— for which positions were furnished all the way across. From 
the European terminal points to meridian 40° west, the cables, with the 
exceptions just mentioned, were plotted from information deposited in 
the Office of Naval Intelligence. 

A map furnished by tlie Western Union Telegrajib Comjiany was used 
for the jilottingof the princijial connecting land lines in the United States. 

The cables and land lines of Japan were taken chictly from the Outline 
Map of Japan showing the princijial Post, Telegrajih, and Railway Routes, 
jiublished by the Japanese Dejiartment of Communications in 1888, and 
which accomjianies “A concise Dictionary of the jirincijial Roads and 
Chief Towns and Villages of Jajian,” by W. N. Whitnej’, AI. D., formerly 
Interjireter at the I". S. Legation at Tokyo. 

The other cables and land lines of the World were taken cbielly from 
the “Carte des Communications Tf-legraphiiiues du Regime Extra-Euro- 
jieen dressee d’ajires des documents olliciels jiar Le Bureau International 
des Administrations Telegraphiijues,” Berne, 1888. 

The Coaling, Docking, and Rejiairing Stations of the World and their 
different grades of facilities were compiled mainly from a |)ublieation of 
the Office of .Naval Intelligence, entitled “Coaling, Docking, and Ihqiair- 
ing Facilities of the INirts of the World,” 18!)2, ami corrections thereto uj> 
to December, 1895, and from the British Dock book of 18tl4. 


*Tliis chart io sold hy the Hydro^niphic Ollicp and its agents at .'lo conls per copy. 


PETER COOPER AND SUBMARINE TELEGRAPHY 


In presenting to its readers a chart of the submarine telegraph 
cables of the world, Tuk National Gioographic iNlAGAzrxn was 
unwilling that this graphic representation of intercontinental 
communication should be unaccompanied by some reference to 
one of its earliest and most effective pioneers, the late Peter 
Cooper. It is well to recall to tlie rising generation its indebted- 
ness to Mr Cooper for his eminent services in fostering the initia- 
tion of this now elaborate network between the widely sepa- 
rated continents of the earth. With considerable reluctance, and 
onl}" after repeated urging, one of the actors in this great work, 
the Honorable Abram S. Hewitt, has outlined, in a letter all too 
brief, the i»art played b}" Mr Cooper. The letter is as follows : 

“ The story of the Atlantic Calile has been so fully and so well 
told l)y the Rev. Henry M. Field in his history, published in 
18!)'2 by Messrs Scribner & Sons of this cit}^, that only the briefest 
outline is necessary to call public attention to the origin of an 
enterprise which, at the time of its inception, was regarded with 
incredulity, and whose jirosecution and final success have all 
the elements of a romance. 

“ My first knowledge of the enterprise was in 1854, when Mr 
Cyrus \V. Field invited Mr Peter Cooper and other gentlemen 
to listen to the jiropo.sitions of P’rederick N. Gisborne, who had 
come to New York for the purpose of interesting cajiital in con- 
structing a line of telegrajih across Newfoundland, so as to get 
the news at cape Race from the European steamers and trans- 
mit it thence overland to the gulf of St. Lawrence and thence 
by fast steamers to cape Breton, whence land lines had been 
constructed connecting with our American system. In that in- 
terview no suggestion was made for a cable across the gulf of 
St. Lawrence, because it was doubtful at that time whether sub- 
marine communication of such length could 4>e established and 
maintained. The amount of money required was not very con- 
siderable, and the gentlemen a))pealed to, being all men of large 
views, came to the conclusion that they would contribute the 
amount, not so much as a commercial s{)eculation as from con- 
siderations of the advantage of early news in business transac- 
tions affecting the two continents. The Newfoundland Com])any 


108 


PETER COOPER AND SUBMARINE TELEGRAPHY 


10 !) 


Avas organized, Avith ]\[r Cooper as its president and Mr Field as 
its actiA’e manager. The other gentlemen concerned in the un- 
dertaking AA'ere INIoses TaAdor, Marshall 0. Roberts, Chandler \\'. 
MTiite, and, at a later period, Wilson G. Hunt. DaA’id Dudley 
Field also took an interest and Avas legal adAusor of the company. 

“Arrangements AA'ere made for the construction of the land 
line AA’ithout delay, and later, AAdien the experience of the Euro- 
pean submarine cables established the practicability of longer 
lines, it Avas decided to lay the cable across the gulf of St. LaAA'- 
rence, a distance of about eighty miles. The first attempt to lay 
this cable AA*as a failure, OAAung to the imperfect arrangements for 
transporting the calde across the gulf, and the occurrence of a 
storm AA'hich caused the seA^erance of the cable AAdren the A^essel 
engaged in laying it AA'as midAA^aA'^ betAA^een the tAAm termini. It 
AA'as determined. liOAA'eA'er, to reneAV the attempt, and in the fol- 
loAA’ing year a cable AA'as successful!}^ laid, and the original plan 
of the company for intercepting neAA'S at cape Race Avas carried 
into effect. As a matter of course, the enterprise AA'as not a com- 
mercial success, but its adA’antages AA’ere so apparent that the 
parties in interest concluded that the time had come to make 
the attempt to continue the cable from NeAA'foundland to the 
coast of Ireland. Tiie idea AA'as a daring one, but the highest 
electrical authorities concurred in opinion that it AA'as feasible. 
Mr Field proceeded to England to organize a company, in Avhich 
he succeeded, and AA'hich resulted in the attempt to lay the cable 
in 1857, made by the Agamemnon on the British side and by the 
Niagara on the American side. I need not rehearse the story of 
the successiA'e failures, but the first one occurred in 1857, during 
the panic of that year, AA’hich spread AA'ide ruin throughout the 
country. Among others, Mr Field Avas comj)elled to succuml), 
and it seemed prol)able that any further attempt to construct 
and lay the cable aa'ouUI l)e abandoned. It Avas at thisjuncture 
that tlie strong common sense and unshaken faith of Peter 
Ctjoper came into ]>lay. When the financial storm had abat(‘(l, 
ho urged Mr Field to undertake the resuscitation of the enter- 
}»rise, and he oflered to advance, and actually did advance, the 
money n;fiuired for Mr Field’s expenditures, until such time as 
the success of the cable might be demonstrated and assured. 
Some of the oth(;r gentlemen deelim.-dto participate in these ad- 
A’ances, and hence the burden U))on Mr Cooper was very onerous 
and gave great concern to his family. Nevertheless Mr Field 
soon recovered his confidence, and Avith indomitable courage 


no RUSSO-AMERICAX TELEGRAPH PROJECT OF 1864-'67 


and indefiitigable industry he finall}" succeeded in accomplish- 
ing the difficult undertaking with which his name and fame are 
justly identified. So far as Mr Cooper and his famil}' were con- 
cerned, they did what they could to secure the success of the 
enterprise, and I think it may he justly asserted that, without Mr 
Coo])er’s assistance and absolute faith in the final success of the 
undertaking, its realization would have been postponed for many 
j^ears. In the end he was fully indemnified, and perhaps amply 
rewarded, for his investment, hut without detracting in the 
slightest from the credit which is justly accorded to Mr Field, 
I think I am justified in making, at your request, this brief 
statement, in order to show that without the unflinching courage 
and cooi)eration of Mr Cooper, INIr Field would hardly have been 
in a position to achieve the triumph which he finally secured, 
and for which his memoiy is entitled to tlie veneration of suc- 
ceeding generations.” 


THE RUSSO-AMERICAN TELEGRAPH PROJECT OF 

i 864-’67 

By Professor William H. Ball 

Tlie possibility of constructing a line of telegraph overland 
through Siberia and northwestern America had doubtless oc- 
curred to many, hut the first person to endeavor to give practical 
effect to the conception appears to have been Mr Perry M. Collins, 
of California, who in ISoh and for some years suhsequenth" was 
United States consular agent at Xikolaievsk, on the Amur river, 
eastern Siberia. By dint of constant activity and perseverance, 
Mr Collins succeeded in obtaining the concessions necessary to 
the construction of a line of telegraph, with all needful acces- 
sories, from the Amur to tlie British Columbian line through 
eastern Siberia and the Bussian-American colonies, and also 
through the British territories in America. 

Continual mishaps in the course of the attempts to la}" a work- 
able cable across the Atlantic had led many telegraphers to 
lielieve that the plan was im])racticable, though they had no 
doubt of their ability to construct and keep in working order 
shorter lines, such as that proposed across Bering strait. The 
]>ropositions of Mr Collins were laid before the Directors of the 
Western Union Telegraph Comjiany, March 16, 1864. They ac- 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL, XII 



WILLIAM H DALL 




EUSSO-AMERICAX TELEGRAPH PROJECT OF 1864-' 61 111 


cepted, by a unanimous vote, the transfer of his rights and in- 
terests, and on iNIarch 18 completed an organization for the 
carrying out of the project. 

An expedition to explore the proposed route, under Col, Chas. S. 
Eulkley, formerly of the United States military telegraph corps, 
was immediately organized. Col. Eulkley reached the Pacific 
coast in January, 1865. The exploration of the Eritish Colum- 
bian line was directed b}’’ Edmund Conway, that of Russian 
America h}^ Robert Kennicott and that of eastern Siberia by 
Sergius Ahasa. The United States detailed Capt. C. M. Scam- 
mon, of the Revenue Marine Service, and two other officers to 
the fleet fitted out by the company, and the Russian government 
lent the aid of the corvette Vsadnik, The first visit was paid to 
tlie Russian authorities at Sitka in March, 1865. In July par- 
ties were on the way to Siberia, Alaska, and Eering strait. Ex- 
plorations during this and the following season demonstrated 
the practicability of the route selected, and saw a small amount 
of line constructed, every endeavor being made to carry out the 
project. 

In 1867 the Atlantic cable at last proved itself a working suc- 
cess. On the other hand, the experience gained by the expedi- 
tions sent out in connection with the Russo-American project 
showed that tlie maintenance of the projected line would he so 
expensive as to make it iin possible for it to compete with the 
Atlantic cable, commercially. Consequently the company de- 
cided to withdraw from the enterprise and in the autumn of 
1867 the parties returned to California. 

The route chosen was up the valley of the Fraser river in 
Eritish Columbia and down the Yukon to the Nulato bend, 
thence across country to Port Clarence, where a caljle was to con- 
nect with the Siberian lines. The latter would leave the Chukchi 
peninsula, cross the neck of the i)cninsula of Kamchatka and 
skirt the shores of the Okhotsk sea, joining the Russian lines at 
Nikolaiev.sk. It is stated that a large part of the fourteen 
millions of (hdlars rej)resented by the stock was actually ex- 
])ended in the work ; at all events a large amount of money was 
spent, and the only returns were those public benefits implied 
by an increase of geographical and other .scientific knowledge 
and the training of a number of exi»l(M'er.s and investigators. 


SURVEY AND SUBDIVISION OF INDIAN TERRITORY 


By Hexry Gannett, 

Chief Topographer, United States Geological Survey 

The condition of things in Indian Territory is anomalous. 
The Territory is an area of some 31,000 square miles, divided 
among what are called the Five Civilized Tribes — the Cherokees, 
Choctaws, Chickasaws, Creeks, and Seminoles — the reservation of 
each tribe being owned by the tribe. Such a thing as private 
ownership of land is unknown. Each individual entitled to do 
so is, however, ijermitted to take up and occup}' any land which 
is not already occupied, but in so doing he does not acquire title. 

The population of the Territory consists of some 50,000 In- 
dians, a few whites who have married Indian women and have 
thus acquired membership in the tribe, with the accompanying 
}>rivileges and emoluments ; a few thousand negroes, mostly the 
descendants of slaves, and a large number, variously estimated 
at from 1 00,000 to200,000,of whites, who are living in the Territory 
on sufferance, some legally upon the payment of a small tax, 
others without the shadow of right or authority. These latter 
are known as interlopers. 

As might be expected under this condition of affairs, the whites 
Avho have married Indian women, being much shrewder and 
more experienced than the Indians, have acquired by the right 
of occupation nearly all the landed property which is worth 
having in the Territory. They own, if it can be called owning, 
all the best farming and grazing land, all the timber land which 
is of immediate value, all the town sites, and all the mineral 
land which is worth having, and by leasing this property to 
whites they are rapidly acquiring great wealth. 

Although in many respects quite advanced in the arts of civili- 
zation, the governments established by these Indians are weak 
and insufficient. So far as the control of the Indians themselves 
is concerned, they may have ample power, but at present they 
are called on to cope with and control a large body of whites, 
outnumbering themselves at least three to one, and composed 
largely of the rough, lawless, frontier element ; indeed, were not 
the tribal governments reinforced by the power of the United 


112 


SURVEY AND SUBDIVISION OF INDIAN TERRITORY 113 


States courts the Territory would long ago have been in a state 
of anarchy. 

This situation of affairs, instead of improving with time, is 
rapidly becoming worse, inasmuch as the number of interlopers 
in the Territoiy is constantly and rapidly increasing. The remedy 



OUTLI.NE .MAP OF INDIAN TERRITORY, SHOWING PROGRESS OF SUHDIVISION SURVEY 
UP TO JANUARY I, 1896. 


for this threatening aspect of affairs is plainly the substitution of 
a territorial government by all inhabitants for the present tribal 
governments of the Indian minority, the allotment of land to 
the Indians, and the con.se<iueiit establishment of land titles. 

Foreseeing the neciissity of this solution, (longnj.ss has for the 
I>ast two years been endeavoring to treat with the tribes for the 


114 SURVEY AXD SUBDIVISIOX OF IXlJlAX TERRITORY 


purpose of inducing them to accept their lands in severalty. In 
pursuance of this object two different commissions have been 
appointed, each of which has spent several months in the Terri- 
tory endeavoring to obtain a hearing from the tribes, but thus 
for without the slightest result. The tribes have declined abso- 
lutely to treat with them upon this subject. 

During the progress of these attempts at negotiation Congress 
has taken another step in the same direction. In March, 1895, an 
appropriation of 8200.000 was made by Congress for commencing 
the survey and subdivision of the lands of the Territory, being 
the necessary ])reliminaiw step toward allotment. This work 
was placed by the Secretary of the Interior in the hg^nds of the 
Director of the Geological Surve}^, instead of being let out on 
contract, as has been done in all cases of subdivision heretofore. 
The Chickasaw nation was excepted, as it was subdivided in 
1873. The work was commenced in April under the following 
plan : The Indian base line, which forms the base line of the 
Chickasaw nation and of Oklahoma, was adopted for carrying 
the work into the other nations. The second guide meridian 
east of the principal meridian of the Chickasaw nation was run 
northward and southward as a principal meridian for the other 
nations. Thus while the general system of surveys conforms to 
that in the Chickasaw nation and in Oklahoma, the work has 
been so planned as to make it independent of any errors which 
may have accumulated in the earlier work. 

Two parties have been engaged continuously since April last 
in running standard lines (guide meridians and correction lines) 
b}’ which the country is divided into blocks twenty-four miles 
on a side. The township exteriors were run by distinct parties, 
two parties being at first organized for this work, which were 
subsequently increased to four. The subdivision of townships 
into sections was carried on by still a third set of parties, eight 
of which were organized and placed in the field during the month 
of May, and the number was subsequently increased to sixteen. 
Thus the entire work of subdividing the land is carried on by 
three distinct sets of parties, the work of each checking that of 
another. 

Furthermore, a system of triangulation has been carried over 
the area subdivided, and the stations in this triangulation have 
been connected with section and township corners. This is done 
not only for the purpose of checking and correcting errors, but 
also to form reference points for the recovery of missing corners, 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XIII 



INDIAN TERRITORY — CAMP OF A SURVEYING PARTY OF THE U. S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY, 1895 





SURVEY AND SUBDIVISION OF INDIAN TERRITORY 115 


the triaiigulation points being marked in a very permanent man- 
ner. The triangulation rests upon a base line measured on the 
track of the Missouri, Kansas and Texas railway near Savanna, 
and the astronomical position of this place was determined as 
the initial position. 

The subdivision parties, by which is to be understood the par- 
ties engaged in running the section lines, are grouped, four of 
them being in charge of an experienced surveyor connected with 
the permanent corps of the United States Geological Survey, who 
supervises the work closely and attends to the executive man- 
agement of the outfit, and who, moreover, commonly with the 
aid of an assistant, maps the topography of the area subdivided. 
This latter duty is rendered light by the fact that the surveyor 
in running the lines locates the points of crossing of every stream, 
road, or other natural or artificial feature which he encounters 
in the course of his line. Thus at intervals of a mile or less all 
the features are located and little remains for the topographer to 
do except to sketch these features between these points of 
location. 

The ])rogress made in this survey up to the end of January 
of the present }'ear is set forth in a report which has been made 
to the Secretary of the Interior. It appears from this that in 
the primary triangulation 49 stations have been selected, signals 
built uj)on them and angles measured from them. By means 
of these stations an area of about 10,000 square miles, or aI)out 
five-twelfths of the area of the Territory, excluding the Chicka- 
saw nation, has been controlled. In the subdivison work 11,770 
miles had been run out of an estimated amount of 47,000 miles 
to complete the Territory, or about one-fourth of the entire 
work. Of the above mileage 970 miles are of standard lines — 
that is, standard parallels and correction lines; 1,790 miles are 
exterior lines of townships, 8,770 miles are section lines, and 
the remaining 240 miles are the meander lines of streams. 
The work thus far done completes the subdivision of 128 full 
townships and 20 fractional townships. It is included inainly 
in the western part of the Choctaw nation, embraces all of the 
Seminole country and some of the Creek country, while standard 
lines have been run into the Cln'rokcc nation. The i>rogrc.ss is 
represented upon the sketch map accompanying this paper. 

The mapping of topography has followed closel}' after the 
work of subdivision, and up t<> the date given above an ari?a of 
4,2(X) square miles had been thus mapped. 


“FREE BURGHS” IN THE UNITED STATES* 


B}' Jamks H. Blodgett, 

Late Special Agent of Census in Charge of Education 

Three bridjies across the Potomac river connect the District of 
Columbia witli the State of Virginia. Tlie upper one, known as 
the Chain bridge, just below the Little falls, the head of tide- 
water, is too far from dense population to be frequented by foot 
passengers. Three miles below the Chain bridge is the Aqueduct 
bridge, practically the head of navigation, since only small pleas- 
ure boats and scows to bring stone from the quarries go above it. 

Along the Virginia shore, above the Aqueduct bridge, are va- 
rious “ resort houses,” more or less permanent, ostensibly for 
legitimate relaxation and pleasure, but viewed with suspicion 
by the authorities on both sides of the river, justified by results 
of occasional raids by officials. At the Virginia end of the same 
bridge is a straggling group of houses known as Rosly n, a favorite 
place for those who want to go beyond the police restraints of 
the District of Columbia, and particularly for those interested in 
the gambling device known as policy, a sort of lottery, especially 
attractive to the colored people. 

Between the Aqueduct bridge and the Long bridge, two miles 
or more farther down, at the upper extreme of dense habitation, 
the low ground on the Virginia side is brushy, with but few 
houses, and is a rambling ])lace for various kinds of boys and 
men, Avho find the towpath of the abandoned canal a convenient 
footway. The high lands contain the Government reservation, 
comprising Fort Myer and the Arlington national cemetery. 
Close to the Virginia end of the historic Long bridge are a few 
houses known as Jackson City. Freedom from rigid police con- 
trol has made this a convenient place for gambling in various 
forms. Close by, known as Alexander’s island, is maintained, 
irregularly, a race-course. Three miles farther is another race- 
course, known as St. Asaph. A good part of the racing in sight 

♦ This ai tide, written for The National GEOCRArHic Magazine, is less technical and 
has less of legal citation and quotation of authorities than a paper bearing the same title 
read before the Anthropological Society of Washington, November 5, 1895. The latter, 
valuable for purposes of reference and verification, will be printed by the American 
Historical Association. 

IIG 


“FREE BURGHS" IN THE UNITED STATES 


117 


of the Capitol has been that known as “ outlaAv racing ” — that 
is, with horses or with jockeys not in good standing Avith the regu- 
lar racing associations. Just below St. Asaph is the city of Alex- 
andria, which is })opularly regarded as a part of Alexandria 
county, to share whatever of good or l)ad repute attaches to it. 

At the census of 1790 all this A’icinity Avas part of Fairfax 
county, except that Alexandria already had a sc*i)arate court and 
Avas exempt from county taxes. For the organization of the 
Di.strict of Columbia, Virginia ceded to the General Government 
the jurisdiction* over a tract l)ounded by tbe line extending ten 
miles northAvest from the mouth of Hunting creek, a line north- 
east from the terminus of the first, and the river, containing an 
area said to be thirty-tAvo square miles. In 1801 Congress erected 
the area ceded b}’- Virginia into a county, to be called Alexandria 
county, but expressly retaining for Alexandria all existing char- 
tered rights. In 1846 the United States re-ceded the tract to 
Virginia, Avhich has continued to be generally knoAvn as Alex- 
andria county, though the policy of separation of city and county, 
suspended for half a century, has been reneAved. The combined 
population of city and county in 1890 Avas 18,597, of Avhich 14,339 
])ersons Avere in the city of Alexandria, Avhich is not a part of 
Alexandria county, although its name, its vicinity, its recent 
affinity with the county, and the presence of the county Imild- 
ings t Avith most persons to make the residents municipally 
responsible for the unlaAvful conduct near b}". Many persons, 
while rejoicing in the measure of success attained, do not see Avhy 
the energetic governor of Virginia sent officers to break u}) dis- 
rejmtalde j)ractices in the county. They do not ai)preciate the 
Aveakness of the real Alexandria county Avhen the gambling ele- 
ments of the neighboring cities floAV out upon it. It has but a 
little over 4,0W population (1890), of Avhom, after deducting 164 
on the military reservation, over one-half (2,123) are of negro 
descent, and not yet of much proi)rietary responsibility. 

Alexandria is but an example of the cities of Virginia from the 
earliest days. James City, better knoAvn as JamestoAvn, and now 
extinct, was established as the chief city in 1639. W’illiamsburg 
Avns set apart as a city, to l)c used for no other i>ur])Ose Avhatever, 
aiul (hJined as the ca})ital in 16!)9, and again in 1705, in advance 
<jf population. There Avas a general plan to put in each county 


•The owncTHhlp remaiiioil in the existing proprietors. Certain autliors erroneously 
state tliat tile title or possession was transferreil. 
t A l)ill is iienilin^ for erection of county liuililiuKs outside of tlio city. 


118 


‘'FREE BURGHS” IN THE UNITED STATES 


a similar town for commercial purposes, especially for warehous- 
ing and marketing tobacco. Norfolk, chartered as a borough in 
1737, has lost that name, but its relations to the county are to- 
day like those of the original charter, gradually defined, strength- 
ened, and confirmed, in points of dispute, in favor of the munici- 
pality. At first the Norfolk county buildings were in Norfolk, 
and a si)ecial clause in the charter reserved proprietary rights in 
them to the county. Later legislation authorized their sale and 
the erection of county l)uildings outside of Norfolk. The build- 
ings are now in Portsmouth. 

In 1776 many boroughs which had been given separate repre- 
sentation in the assembly were cut off by a law which prescribed 
that no borough with a population less, for seven successive 
jmars, than half that of any county should be separately repre- 
sented. In the same year the delegate for William and Mary 
College, specified in its charter, was cut off. 

In the state law for apportionment of members of Congress, 
1892, the following names of cities are given separate from names 
of counties: First district, Fredericksburg; second, Norfolk, 
Portsmouth, and Williamsburg ; third, Richmond and Man- 
chester; fourtii, Petersburg; filth, Danville and the town of 
North Danville ; sixth, Lynchburg, Radford, and Roanoke ; 
seventh, Charlottesville and Winchester ; eighth, Alexandria ; 
ninth, Bristol ; tenth, Staunton. To these are to be added Buena 
Vista, in the tenth district, chartered on the day of the approval 
of the apportionment bill, and Newport News, for Avhich the bill 
Avas signed January 18, 1896. The conditions for the town of 
North Danville are in transition. It has been a toAvn inde- 
pendent of Pittsylvania county, but judicially dependent on 
Danville. The name has recently been changed to Neapolis, 
and just too late for insertion here it Avill be determined by 
popular vote whether it shall be consolidated with DaiiA'ille.* 

In early days there was a disposition in certain other colonies 
to establish cities independent of counties. In New Jersey and 
in ^Maryland such early independencies as survived came under 
county control. In Pennsylvania the claims of GermantoAvn to 
independence ot the taxation of Philadelphia county Avere over- 
ruled b}'^ the governor. In Virginia, from the incorporation of 
James City (1639), it has been the steady policy to have the 
cities independent of the counties. It confuses some students 

* By popular vote, on February 20, Neapolis is to become a part of Danville on July 
1, 189G. 


FREE BURGHS” IH THE UNITED STATES 


119 


to find an occasional ]iarticipation of ui’ban residents and rural 
residents in local affairs, but on examination of charters it will 
be found that this extends onl}’- to subjects expressly named in 
any instance. 

If one will examine the scheme of government for the cit}* 
and count}'- of St. Louis, Missouri (1876), he will find that all 
power of county officers was abrogated. The same act restored 
their power for the rural portion, now St. Louis county, leaving 
the city to be provided with a separate government in the same 
act. The situation in Virginia may be clearer if the legislature 
is deemed to have abolished all county authority in any city 
under consideration, and then to have I’estored by name such 
items of power as circumstances demanded. 

The present cities of Virginia have the following character- 
istics : 

The Code defines a city as a town having over 5,000 inhabitants 
and a hustings court, and defines a town as an incorporated town 
having less than 5,000 population.* 

The cities have distinct courts. Their citizens do not pay 
county taxes on city property. They do not serve on county 
juries. Deeds and other papers affecting city property are re- 
corded by city officers and not by county officers. 

Generally, residents of cities do not participate in county elec- 
tions. Exceptionally, they may hold county offices, more excep- 
tionally, they may vote for county officers. 

Generally, city police courts have jurisdiction one mile beyond 
corporate limits. Exce]>tionally, there is a limited concurrent 
jurisdiction of city and county courts, as over waters adjacent to 
the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth and to Norfolk county. 

Generally, the county and the city have each a set of public 
buildings within their respective borders. Exceptionally, au- 
thority is given to a county for buildings in a city, as when, at 
the chartering of the city of Manchester, Chesterfield county was 
authorized to continue to use its })ublic buildings therein till 
other arrangements could be made. This authority sometimes 
embraces arrangement for joint occupancy, as when Norfolk 
county was authorized to arrange with the city of Portsmouth 
for the location and construction of a jail. 

Generally, a county odiccr may not serve writs in a city. Ex- 
ceptionally, he can serve writs in the city on residents of bis 

» Tho venerable city of WilliuinsburK has a smaller population, but its site is expressly 
set apart for a city. 


120 


“FREE BURGHS” IX THE UNITED STATES 


count}”, as witnesses may be summoned for Campbell count}’’ in 
the city of Lynchburg. 

Except for individually specified purposes, county and city 
are as distinct as two counties. 

The city of Newport News, Virginia, was organized January 20, 
1896, under a charter naming officers to serve till July. The 
charter contains the following paragraph : 

“ 115. The city of Newport News, its real and personal prop- 
erty and other subjects of taxation, and its inhabitants shall be 
exemj)t from all assessments and levies in the way of taxes im- 
])osed l)y the authorities of Warwick county for any purpose 
whatever, except upon property owned in the said county by 
the inhabitants of said city, from and after the first day of Jan- 
uary, eighteen hundred and ninety-six, nor shall said inhabit- 
ants 1)0 liable to serve upon juries or work upon roads in said 
county except in such cases as are provided for by the laws of 
the state.” 

This extract states an exemption of residents in cities from 
county taxes and from duty on county juries prevalent in the 
state. 

The ])resent fiicts regarding the cities of Virginia are little 
known beyond the state. The Congressional Directory is con- 
spicuous as a public document out of the state that shows the 
cities separately. The Civil Service Commission has found it 
necessary to recognize the certificate of an officer of a city court 
of record for Baltimore, St. Louis, and the cities of Virginia where 
a certificate from a county court was contemplated. A list of 
cities in Virginia paying no county taxes occurs in the Report 
of the Tenth Census (1880), volume 7, page 117. 

Ordinarily, in this country, a city is part of a county ; it is 
set apart that a dense population may establish new values and 
impose new taxes to meet special demands for public welfare; 
it continues to pay county taxes. 

The difficulty of harmonious action by sparse and dense popu- 
lations upon subjects common to them has led to exceptional 
separation of cities from counties — Baltimore, Maryland, by suc- 
cessive steps, culminating in 1823, and St. Louis, Missouri, 
througli popular vote in 1876. 

These two instances are exi)lained in the Johns Hopkins 
University studies in liistorical and political science — Local In- 
stitutions of ^Maryland, in volume 3, and City Government of. 
St. Louis, in volume 5, the latter being most minute, and con- 


“FREE BURGHS” IX THE EXITED STATES 


121 


stitiiting a monograph in itself, and yet the existence of cities 
independent of county control and of county taxes is denied in 
certain histories and works on civil government used in high 
schools, colleges, and universities. 

In many states the administration of the public schools is 
largely through municipalities charged with that work and super- 
imposed upon areas occupied by other municipalities charged 
with other interests. There is a very general tendency to charter 
school districts independent of the town in the north or of the 
county at the south. In some states this method of enabling a 
community to do what the larger unit of which it has been part 
is not ready to do bids fair to increase. This form of legislation 
is more common in the west and south than in the northeast. 
The forms which these educational municipalities assume are 
numerous, and the complications produced are often intricate. 

I'he complications are probably most intricate in those states 
formed of the public domain which have township organization, 
a modified form of the town government of New England. It 
will be most convenient to limit illustration to the organizations 
which possess taxing powers, disregarding subdivisions made 
simply for details of administration of a larger unit, like a vot- 
ing ])recinct as a division of a county without taxing power. 
National, state, and county taxes bear upon property-owners 
throughout the country, with the exception of county taxes in St. 
Louis, Baltimore, and cities of Virginia, as already explained. 
The national taxes are so largely collected on goods in bulk before 
their distribution that most consumers either d© not recognize 
them or persuade themselves that somebody else pays them. 

Below the county tax come the multitudes of variations. The 
congre.ssional township of the land survey, six miles square, in 
its simplest organization became a school township — a })lan en- 
couraged by the grant to the state of a section or of two sections 
or square miles in a townshi|) for school purposes. This school 
corporation is often subdivided into districts, each with its ta.x- 
ing })Ower. There are instances of superimposed incorporation 
of the town as a high-school district with taxing power, 'rnrn- 
ing from school administration, we find the same area made a 
civil townsliip, with care of roads, the poor, and other subjects. 
V'ithin this tf)wnship may grow up a compact body of po])ula- 
tion to be chartered as a village, a town, or a (dty, according to 
circumstances, with taxing ])ower for police and other purposes. 
In some instances, like Springfield, Illinois, these units will as- 


122 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY: 


sume the charge of schools ; in others, like Aurora, Illinois, the 
cit}' does not administer the schools, which remain under the 
districts into which the school township was divided. 

A citizen may therefore find himself under three sets of taxes 
for schools — the township and the district for common schools 
and the high school township for its specialty. He may have in 
addition the civil township tax and the corporation tax. When 
the school district is given a charter making it independent of 
its town, the succession of taxes is modified. A volume would 
hardly suffice to instance all the variations and combinations of 
duties of the taxpayer in different states, or even in different 
j)arts of the same state, growing out of the separately chartered 
taxing powers and their limited independencies. 

The cities of Washington, D. C., which has practicalh’^ absorbed 
Washington county and become identified with the District of 
Columbia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania ; New York; Brooklyn 
(.January 1, 189b), New York ; New Orleans, Louisiana, coexten- 
sive with Philadelphia, New York, and Kings counties and 
Orleans parish respectively, but continuing to exercise some func- 
tions of counties, and San Francisco, California, identical with 
San Francisco county, represent simply a growth by which cities 
have filled county boundaries, and not an independence of 
counties. 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 

The receipt at a somewhat late hour of two important articles published 
in this numher of the magazine has necessitated the holding over until 
April of the entire Department of Geographic Literature. 


PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 
SOCIETY, SESSION iSqs-’qG. 

Special Meeting, January 31, 1896. — Vice-President Greely in the chair. 
Mr Richard Villafranca, Commissioner General from Costa Rica to the 
Atlanta Exposition, read a paper, with lantern-slide illustrations, on 
The Geography, People, and Resources of Costa Rica. 

Regular Meeting, February 7, Vice-President ^Merriam in the chair. 

Mr W J McGee delivered an address, illustrated by lantern slides 
(mo.stly from original photographs), entitled “A Sojourn in Seriland: 
Explorations among Hostile Savages of the Gulf of California.” 


ITS PROCEEDINGS 


123 


Special Meeting, February 14, 1896 . — President Hubbard in the chair. 
Commander Z. L. Tanner, United States Navy, described his cruise in 
command of the United States Fish Commission steamer Albatross 
from the north Atlantic to the north Pacific, via the strait of Magellan 
and the Galapagos islands. Practical details of the scientific work and 
views of the various ports visited were given by means of lantern-slide 
illustrations. 

Regular Meeting, February SI, 1896 . — President Hubbard in the chair. 
Hon. George C. Perkins, United States Senator, read a paper, illustrated 
by lantern slides, on California : her Geography, Scenery, and Resources. 

FIlectioxs. — New members have been elected as follows : - 

February 3 . — John M. Comstock, Dr F. P. Dewey, Herbert Forsyth, 
Capt. D. D. Gaillard, U. S. A., Edward M. Kindle, Gen. Nelson A. Miles, 
U. S. A., R. A. Pearson, W. S. Post, W. P. Robinson, Wm. A. Taylor, 
Col. W. B. Thompson, Thos. L. Watson, Hon. Andrew D. White. 

February 14 - — Dr J. O. Adams, W. H. Baldwin, Jr., Miss Amy M. 
Bradley, Levi J. Bryant, Mrs 31. L. Byington, 3Irs J. A. Campbell, Col. 
H. W. Closson, U. S. A., J. Ashley Cooi^er, Gen. W. P. Craighill, U. S. A., 
Claas Denekas, Pay In.spector L. A. Frailey, U. S. N., Chief Justice 
3Ielville W. Fuller, Col. D. S. Gordon, U. S. A., Dr Ida J. Heiberger, 
F. J. Heiberger, James G. Jester, Lieut. W. Lacy Kenly, U. S. A., 3Irs 
W. H. Kerr, T. A. Lambert, James B. Lambie, Noble D. Lamer, Daniel 
3V. Lord, Wm. G. Lown, Samuel 3Iaddox, Chas. Addison 3Iann, Jr., 
Edward J. 3IcQuade, Hon. John L. 3Iitchell, U. S. S., W. Henderson 
3IoseS, Owen Owen, A. S. Perhain, August Peterson, Dr Chas. V. Petteys, 
Robert A. Phillips, 3Ir J. B. Pioda (Swiss 3Iinister), Rev. Philip 31. 
Prescott, J. 31. Rieman, John 3V. Saville, Thos. 3V. Smith, Capt. J. A. 
Snyder, U. S. A., W. E. Speir, Pearce Thompson, Capt. R. 3"ance, U. S. A., 
W. H. Veerhoff', Dr John E. 3Valsh, John Sidney Webb, Oscar W. 3Vhite, 
Ernest 3Vilkin.son. 

OiuTu.vitY. — General John Gibl)on, a distinguished officer and gallant 
soldier, died in Baltimore February 6. Graduating at the United States 
3Iilitary Academy in 1847, he rose to he a brigadier-general in the regular 
Army and a major-general of Volunteers. Alike against the Seniinoles in 
Florida and the Nez Perces and Siou.x in the northwest, in the 3Iexican 
war and in the war for the Union, he served with conspicuous gallantry, 
winning distinction whether he was in command of a regiment, a brigade, 
a division, or an army corps. The most desi)erate battles of the army of 
the Potomac found him at the front, and he was severely wounded both at 
Fredericksburg and Gettysburg. .\s a man, General (Jibbon was greatly 
respected, ami The Natinnal (ieographic Society deplores in his death 
the lo.ss of a valuable nieniber, who in the course of 45 years of active 
service had gaineil a jiractieal knowledge of the geography of the United 
States such as few men have the opportunity of ac«iuiring. 


124 


MISCELLANEA 


No one unacquainted with Professor W. H. Dali’s earlier work as an 
explorer would imagine from the reading of his modest article on pages 
110 and 111 that he himself bore an important and honorable part in one 
of the expeditions to which he refers. To all, however, except the younger 
generation, this fact is well known, as is the further fact that Professor 
Dali’s continued exjilorations and researches in Alaska and the North 
Pacific ocean for the long period of 80 years have led to his recognition 
as one of the best informed men of the time on all matters relating to that 
most interesting and increasingly important section of the globe. After the 
abandonment of the overland telegraph project in 1867, Mr Dali remained 
for some time in Russian America, witnessing its transformation into 
Alaska as the result of its purchase by the United States. On his return, 
he I'aiblished numerous articles of great scientific value, and in 1870 ajj- 
peared his well known work on Alaska and its Resources. As an assistant 
in the U. S. Coast Survey from 1871 to 1874, he devoted himself largely 
to Alaskan studies, making repeated visits to the far north and publish- 
ing from time to time the results of his investigations concerning it. In 
1884 he joined the U. S. Geological Survey, of which he has since re- 
mained an otiicer. He is also closely identified with the Smithsonian 
Institution, of which he is an honorary curator. 

The proi)Osal to establish a permanent directorship-in-chief of scientific 
bureaus and investigations in the Dei)artment of Agriculture, to give 
coordination and continuity to the many-sided scientific work of the De- 
l)artment and to complete the good work done by the present Secretary 
in protecting the scientific force from the onslaught of the political spoils- 
man, has excited great interest in the scientific world and called forth a 
very notable expression of favorable opinion from a large number of emi- 
nent scientists and scientific educators. Within a brief period — in fact, 
since February 18, President Gilman and the faculty of Johns Hopkins, 
President Dwight and the scientific faculty of Yale, President Soliurman 
of Cornell, President Low of Columbia, President Adams of Wisconsin, 
President Francis A. Walker of the Boston Institute of Technology, Dr 
Shaler, dean of the Lawrence Scientific School at Harvard ; Dr John S. 
Billings, of New A'ork ; the Joint Commission of the Scientific Societies 
of Washington, and the presidents and other officers of various state 
universities and colleges have given the proposal the very strongest in- 
dorsement. While the recommendation is scarcely likely to be favorably 
acted upon at the present session of Congress, it is too obviously a step in 
the direction of a more effective and at the same time more economical 
administration — too manifestly in the interest of good government in 
general — ^for its adoption to be long delayed. 

A preliminary announcement of the Mexican census of 1895 gives a 
total pojnilation of 12,542,057, as against 9,908,011 at the census of 1879, 
and 11,632,924 as officially estimated in 1889. The ijopulation of the 
princii)al cities is said to be as follows : Cit}" of Mexico, 339,935 ; Puebla, 
91,917 ; Guadalajara, 83,870; San Luis Potosi, 69,676; Monterey, 56,835; 
IMerida, 56,702; Pachuca, 52,188; Durango, 42,166, and Zacatecas, 40,026. 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 



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Twenty years ago Mexico was practically a closed country to 
the tourist from the United States. Then , the facilities for 
transportation were such that the journey into the quaint land 
l3dng to -the South of us implied weeks of arduous travel, which 
only those inured to hardships could stand. Now, the tourist 
gets into his Pullman Sleeper at New Orleans and the Southern 
Pacific quickly lands him in “the land of the afternoon.’’ The 
way leads through the beautiful bayou region of Louisiana, 
then amid the vast pine forests that fringe the eastern edge of 
the Lone Star State, past Houston, the great cotton mart, and 
San Antonio, the beautiful city of the Alamo and the Missions. 
At Spofford the Mexico slee^Der swings off from the main line 
and in a little while one crosses the Rio Grande at Eagle Pass, 
and finds one’s self upon the soil of the sister Republic. From 
here to Torreon the way leads over the Mexican International, 
and then straight down the Mexican Central, past many quaint 
and Medieval towns, through fertile valleys, where men are 
plowing with slow-moving oxen, over mountain passes, where 
the hill tops flatten into grotesque shapes — to the City of 
Mexico. Every mile of the way is fraught with novel interest. 
At each stop the train makes, quaint groups gathered at the 
station claim attention. Their dress is picturesque, their speech 
is vigorous but musical. They importune one with all sorts of 
confections and trinkets for sale. The domed cities and towns 
which line the way or are visible in the distance, have the at- 
mosphere of villages in Palestine. One may make a visit 
limited by days, or wander for weeks and not be satiated. The 
interest of the city itself is inexhaustible, while Zacatecas, the 
great mining center perched high among the mountains ; Guada- 
lajara, the Boston of the country ; San Luis Potosi, with its 
architecture and its art, or Vera Cruz or Tampico, lying’ amid 
coffee and banana plantations upon the seacoast, are but a few 
of the hundreds of places that attract and charm. You will 
never regret a journey into Mexico, which can be made so 
cheaply and expeditiously via New Orleans and the Southern 
Pacific. Consult the nearest Southern Pacific agent for rates 
and information, or write to S. F. B. Mok.sk, General Pas.senger 
and Ticket Agent, Southern Pacific Company, New Orleans, La. 


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Physiographic Regions of the United States 
Beaches and Tidal Marshes of the Atlantic Coast 
Present and Extinct Lakes of Nevada - - - 

Appalachian Mountains— Northern Section 
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Mt. Shasta— a Typical Extinct Volcano ... 
The New England Plateau 

Niagara Falls and Its History . . . - - 


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Prof. N. S. Shaler 
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Bailey Willis 
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A GOLD MEDAL 

WILL BL AWARDED BY 

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to such pupil in a public high school in the United States as shall compose 
and submit by October 15, 1896, the best original essay, not exceeding 
2,000 words in length, on the Mountain Systems of the United States. 

A Certificate of Proficiency will also be awarded for the best essay 
received from each State, provided such essay is of sufficient merit to 
justify the aw'ard. 

Essays will be received only from such public high schools as formally 
announce their intention to compete by May 31. 

All competitors will be required to make a formal certification on honor 
that they have not received aid from any person in the composition of 
their essays. 

The Adjudication Committee consists of General A. W. Greely, Chief 
Signal Officer, U. S. Army ; Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Mass., and Prof. W. B. Powell, Superintendent 
of Public Schools of the District of Columbia. 

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THE 


National Geographic Magazine, 

PUBLISHED ON THE FIRST OF EVERY MONTH, 
lumbers amonor its contributors the followinof well-known writers 

o o 

on the different branches of geographic science : 


^Ir. Cyrus C. Adams, New York. 

Ir. Cyrus Adler, Smithsoiiiau Institution. 

dr. Marcus Baker, U. S. Geological Survey. 

2apt. John R. Bartlett, U. S. N. 

3r. Francis Brown, Union Tlieol. Seminary. 

dr. E. L- Corthell, C. E., New York. 

Dr. Elliott Coues. 

Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
American Ethnology. 

Dr. Charles W. Dabney, Jr., Assistant Secre- 
tar\- ol Agriculture and rre.sident (on leave) 
of the Tenne.ssee State University. 

Dr. Will. H. Dali, Smithsonian Institution, 
Pres, of the Phil. Society of Washington. 

Dr. George Davidson, President of the Geo- 
graphical Society of the Pacific. 

Mr. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Wm. M. Davis, Professor of Pli 3 ’sical Geog- 
raplij- in Harvard University. 

Dr. David T. Day, Chief of the Div. of Mining 
Stati.stics and Technology, U. S- Geol. Sur. 

Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey’. 

H«m. John W. I'oster, ex-.Secretary of State. 

Mr. Heur}’ Gannett, Chief Topographer, U. S. 
Geol. Sur. and Geographer of i ith Census. 

Mr. (j. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey, 
Pres, of the Geol. Society of Washington. 

Dc*n. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief Signal 
Officer, War Department. 

lion. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
National Geographic Society. 

Dr Mark \V. Harrington, President of the Uni- 
versity of the State of Washington. 

Lieut. Everett Hayden, U. vS. N., Secretary of 
tlie National Geographic Society. 

Mr. Wm. H. Holmes, Dir. of the Dept, of .An- 
thropology, l-ield Coluin. Museum, Chicago. 

Dr. Ihnil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. Slieldon Jaek.soii, U. S. Commissioner of 
Education for Alaska. 


Mr. George Keiinan. 

Prof. William Dibbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
nology. 

Mr. John E. McGrath, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S. N. 

Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Mass. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Ornithologist and Mani- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John H. Mitchell, U. S. ,S. 

Prof. W. L- Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. F'rederick H. Newell, Chief Hydrographer 
of the U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Lieut. Robert E- Peary, U. S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. S. 

Mr. William H. Pickering, Profe.ssorof Astron- 
omy in Harvard University. 

IMajor John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of .American Ethnology and President of the 
Anthropological Society' of Washington. 

Prof. W. B. Powell, vSuperintendent ot Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Hon. John R. Procter, President of the U. S. 
Civil Service Commission. 

IMr. Israel C. Russell, Professor of Geology in 
the Univer.sit)' of Michigan. 

Dr. N. S. vShaler, Professor of Geology in Har- 
vard University. 

Commander Charles D. Sig.sbee, Hydrographer 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Navy' Dept. 

Miss Eliza Ruhaniah Scidmore. 

Commander Z. L- Tanner, U. S. N. 

IMr. I'rank Vincent, New A”ork. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U. S. 
Geological .Survey. 

Mrs. I'annie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


PRINCIPAL CONTENTS OF RECENT NUMBERS. 

JANUARY. — Rus.sia in Europe, with maj), Hon. Gardiner G. Iliibb.ird ; The .Arctic Cruise 
of the U. S. Revenue Cutter “Bear,” with illustrations. Dr. Sheldon Jackson; The 
Scope and Value of .Ar<'ti<‘ hixploration, Gen. A. W. Greely. 

FEBRUARY. Venezuela: Her ( lovernment, People, and Boundary, with maj) and illustra- 
tion:', William E. Curtis ; 'fhe Panama Canal Route, with illustrations. Prof. Robert 'f. 
Hill; 'J'he Tehuantepec Shi]) Railway, with ma])S, E. L- Corthell, C. Iv., LL. D. ; 'I’he 
Presimt Slate of the Nicaragu.i Canal, Gen. .\. W. Greely ; Ex])lorations by the Bureau 
of American Ethnology, W J McCree. 

This number contains a map of the valley of the Orinoco, showing the extent 
of territory drained by that waterway and the bearing it has on the Venezuelan 
question, specially compiled for THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 
jy T. Heyward Gignilliat. of the U. S. War Department. 

25 Cents per Number or $2.50 per Year. 


THE APRIL NUMBER 


OF 




ft 


will contain several important, illustrated 
articles relating to 


THE PACIFIC SLOPE, 

- TOGETHER WITH A ^ 



MAP OF SERILAND,^*^ 

including TIBURON ISLAND, based upon* 
recent geographic explorations and surveys; 


ALSO A MAP OF 

THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


and new determinations of the elevation of 

several of the 

Principal Peaks of the Cascade Range. 


JUDD & DETWEILER, PRINTERS, WASHINGTON. D. C. 





VII 


AP^iL, 1896 


No. 4 


W' 

ir?v 


AN I 





A. W. GREBIli'Zl. 


Honorary Editor : JO 

Honorary Associate 
— W - J IVTcTTBE H 


SCIDMORE 


CONTENTS 

PAGE 

3ERILAND W J McGEE AND WILLARD D. JOHNSON 125 

With map and illustration. 

rHE OLYMPIC COUNTRY. With map. THE LATE S. C. GiLMAN 133 

THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY. ALASKA 

With map and illustration. ELIZA RUHAMAH SCIDMORE 140 

HYDROGRAPHY IN THE UNITED STATES. FREDERICK H. NEWELL 146 
RECENT TRIANGULATION IN THE CASCADES. S. S. GANNETT 150 

THE altitude OF MOUNT ADAMS, WASHINGTON. 

EDGAR McCLURB 151 

Geographic Literature, p. 153 ; Proceedings of The National Geographic Society, 
p. 155; Miscellanea, p. 156. 


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ORGANIZED, JANUARY, 1888 


Presidicxt 

(iARDINER G. HUBBARD 




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MAP.CUS BAKER A. W. GREEDY 

CHARDES \V. DABNEY, Jit. C. HART MERRIAM 

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CoRKUSI’OXniXG Secrkt.\ky 


EVERETT HAYDEN 


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IMaxagers 

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Donations for the founding of Prize Medals and Scholarships are 
respectfully solicited. 




NAT. GEOG. MAG 


W. D. Johnson, Topograplier 


SERI 


I 


Isla 
San Esteban 


SONOR 

From survey's Bureau Arne 
(Coctst-line m.a.inl.y ft'om 
Scale: 7 



VOL. VII. 1896, PL. XIV 


Pun t A \^nac io 


Isla Tahsrie 


Puntar K!ino 


\XI) 


\V J McGee, Kthnoln^ist in ('liarjr^ 


:xico 


■Othriology F,xppdilioT\,1895 

yfti'oyr'riphAi' SijLTVk^ys) 


o I inch 




GEOO mag 


J[2^^^-lB96,PL.XrV 


THE 



Yol. VII APRIL, T896 No. 4 


SERILAND 

By \V J McGee arid Willard D. Johnson 

After tliree weeks of seasoning in the saddle, we pushed through 
the water-gap trenching the chief range of central Sonora and 
descended the sand-wash (commonly dry, locally wet) for a hard 
day to the adobe hamlet of Bacuache, and next morning one of 
us climbed a near-by butte to make a planetable station and inci- 
dentally to realize the peculiar isolation of the long-promised 
land of the Seri Indians, still fifty miles away. On the same 
afternoon of November 29, 1895, we left sand-wash for butte- 
dotted plain in time to see the setting sun shadow a jagged 
mountain crest far out on the broad barrier desert; and the grim 
fatherland of a fierce tribe, the terror of explorers since Coronado, 
the dread of Sonora today, tlie nightmare of the few local set- 
tlers, the cynosure of all eyes of the party, was spontaneously, and 
so uncon.sciously that no one could remember the sponsor, chris- 
tened Seriland. Later, in traversing the hard desert and climb- 
ing the rugged Sierra Seri, and about the guarded camj) lire on 
Isla Tihuron, alternative names for the territory were sought and 
temporarily used, hut they soon slijiped away, while the simple 
appellation clung. 

So Seriland was named, and for present purposes, at least, the 
informal christening may he made formal. 

The little party of the Bureau of American Ethnology pushed 
on from Ifacuache, making stations by the way, to Rancho San 
Francisco de Costa Rica, wheri; they were met hy the owner, 
Senor I’ascual Encinas, the now aged hut always intrepid Seri 


g 


12G 


SERILAND 


figliter, with his good wife Doha Anita. There a small party was 
organized and a little boat was built, and the surveys were jmshed 
into and eventually over the barrier desert and harsh mountains 
of Seriland, both continental and insular. The story of the work 
is not without interest, but must he left for other pages. 

The instrumental outfit comprised a planetable with compass 
and alidade, but no means of h3"psometric determination. The 
planetable triangulation was carried from the international 
boundaiy, and the scale is fixed by the boundary work in con- 
junction with the coastwise positions determined by the United 
States Hydrographic surveys of the Narragamett in 1873-75. 
From Tihuron the surve.v Avas carried eastward beyond Hermo- 
sillo, and from this line the survejmd zone contracts somewhat 
northward to the boundaiy. The area covered is about 10,000 
square miles; 47 stations were occupied for control, and a con- 
siderabl.y larger number of additional jioints for sketching. The 
acconqianying map of Seriland represents only the extreme 
southwestern portion of the area surveyed ; ivithin it 16 stations 
(including the culminating point in Sierra Seri) Avere occupied 
for control as Avell as for sketching. It should be noted that both 
control and sketching are hardly Avhat might be desired on the 
Avestern slojies of Tihuron island. 

The district including Seriland may' be likened unto a great 
roof-slojie stretching from a lofty^ comb in the Sierra Madre to 
and under the gulf of California as into a huge eaves-trough ; 
but the slope is diversified and the eaves-line interrupted b.y 
outlying ranges and buttes. The most aberrant part of roof- 
slojie and eaves-line is Seriland; hirhere the outl.ying ranges are 
of exceptional magnitude and rise even beyond the general 
coastline to form the largest island in the gulf. In general the 
outline of the coast Avould not be greatly changed, but only 
shifted somewhat inland or offAvard, if the sloping plain of Sonora 
Avere to sink or rise a few hundred feet ; but if Seriland Avere 
lifted only a hundred feet its strait Avould be drained and Tiburon 
island Avould join the continent, Avhile if it Avere depressed tAvo 
or three hundred feet the entire province Avould become Iavo 
great islands, and even if Sonora Avere sunk 3,000 feet or more 
Seriland Avould persist as an archipelago far in the offing. Thus 
the land of the Seri stands forth conspicuously on the broad 
continental slope by reason of exceptional altitude. 

Most of the vapor of the Pacific boats over the sun-parched 
plains and loAver mountains along the coast and rolls far up the 


,'SEIULAND 


. 127 


slope toward the Sierra Madre before it is condensed, and thus 
the region is arid. Streams rise in the high Sierra indeed, espe- 
cially during the midwinter and midsummer rainy seasons, and 
rush down the strong slope toward the gulf in roaring torrents ; 
but so diy are air and sand that even the largest floods are ab- 
sorbed well up the incline — and between mountain-born Colo- 
rado and sierra-fed Yaki, 500 miles apart, no river ever reaches 
the sea. The precipitation is greater on the outlying ranges, 
es})ecially the lofty masses of Seriland,than over the intervening 
plains ; yet everywhere tlie rainfall is so slight that the region is 
semidesert, with broad belts of Saharan sands between the coast- 
ward ranges. The local configuration about Seriland appears to 
favor local winds (rising into nearly continuous gales during De- 
ceml)er, 1895), and the unstable air brings forth fogs which feed 
the flora of coast and foothills ; but little moisture in rain, dew, 
or fog ever reaches that broadest of the desert plains of western 
Sonora, the natural boundary of Seriland, Desierto Encinas. So 
the aboriginal principality of Seriland is set apart, isolated, prac- 
tically insulated so far as life is concerned, hy a natural barrier. 
It is to this natural isolation, as well as to the ferocity of the 
natives, that the checking of exploration and evangelization at 
the Seri frontier is to be ascribed ; yet at the same time the char- 
acteristics of the savages are in a measure due to their isolation 
(as shown elsewhere), and thus natural condition and artificial 
custom have cooperated cumulatively through the centuries to 
])revent earlier study of the stanch little dominion of the Seri. 

The toi)Ography of Seriland is striking by reason of the rugged- 
ness of tlie ranges which rise steeply from great apron-like ex- 
]tanses of foot-slope or plain. The abrupt transition from jagged 
cliffs above to smooth ])lains below conveys irresistibly the 
impression that the mountains are buried to their ears in vast 
torrential deposits which line the intervening valleys to profound 
depths ; and the geologist is surprised and distrustful of observa- 
tion until many times repeated when he finds that the intermon- 
tane expanses are simi)ly ])laned rock strata with a scant veneer 
of torrent-spread alluvium. This tojiographic paradox, of which 
the wh(fie of Seriland and much of adjacent Pa))agueria form a 
great example, is well illustrated in a section exposed in the shore 
between Puerta Iidiermj and Punta Ygnacio. .A (piarter of this 
15-mile e.xposure is the current-built point, another (piarter cuts 
butte or range of igneous rock or ancient granite, while the remain- 
ing half traverses typical intermontane plain in clilfs of 20 to 50 


128 


SEEILAND 


feet, and fully 5 out of the 7 J miles of the low eliff reveal the sub- 
stratum of planed granite beneath a torrential veneer, while there 
is more of alluvium-free granite than of graniteless alluvium. 
The sharp contrast between mountain and plain is doubtless due 
to the character of the scant rainfall; but the relation need not 
he further pursued at present. Hardly less striking than this 
general topographic relation are the strong local features of the 
topography. Tiburon island is but 30 miles long and less than 
20 wide, yet it contains several ranges, the dominant one (Sierra 
Kunkaak) of Alpine ruggedness throughout most of its 4,000 feet 
of altitude. Sierra Seri is an imposing assemblage of peaks, 
aretes, precipices, and profound gorges, cutting the azure at fully 
5,000 feet, though the width of the range from strait to desert is 
but 10 miles. Even more impressive than the mountains, to the 
explorer on the ground, is Desierto Encinas — the broad waste of 
playas and sand dunes lying over against the Papago of old, the 
law-bound Sonora of today. Toward its broad basin-shape ex- 
panse storm freshets flow apparently from all directions, yet it 
is never filled and rarely wetted, and the scant water sometimes 
rising to the surface on its steeper western slope is saline ; it is 
partly barred from the gulf and lined in its lower levels by a 
sheet of sediment charged with recent marine shells, which show 
that at no remote day it was an arm of the sea. Of interest, too, 
is the gale-swept strait El Infiernillo, for the foot-slo})es on island 
and mainland are just such as sweep down and merge between 
the parallel ranges of the interior, and extend nearly or quite to 
the coastline where they are cut by wave-carved cliffs or pass 
into current-built sand-spits, making 'it manifest that the strait 
was original!}^ a subaerial valley like those of the interior and 
onl}" recently occupied and slightly modified by the sea. Isla 
Tassne, too, is a noteworthy feature ; though but a fraction of a 
mile in any dimension and for the most part a wave-built bench, 
its nucleus is a 500-foot spire of rock, the half-submerged crest 
of a twinned peak, on which myriads of water fowl nest. The 
topographic detail of Seriland is that of water-carving or water- 
building, yet the aridity is such that the work must proceed 
at infinitesimal rate. The dearth of water is a burning ques- 
tion to the explorer, a vital element in prospective conquest of 
Seriland for the behoof of civilized man. In all the half dozen 
valle3''S, the hundred barrancas, and the thousand storm-cut 
gorges, there are probably less than a dozen nominally perma- 
nent, and but two or three actually permanent, sources of fresh 
water in the territory. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XV. 



ICxpedition boat Anita at anchor. 





SERILAND 


129 


The geolog}^ of Seriland is worthy of study. The prevailing 
rocks of the principal ranges are rather ancient (probably Meso- 
zoic or early Tertiary) lava sheets with associated tuff's and brec- 
cias, while in several localities, notably the western foot-slopes of 
Sierra Seri, there are large areas of still more ancient granite, 
often slightly schistose and intersected with dikes and veins. It 
is tlie current belief in Sonora (a belief based partly on the use 
of rare minerals as face-paint among the Seri) that rich deposits 
of ores and precious metals exist in Seriland, and certain por- 
tions of the area examined certainly appear worth prospecting ; 
but no rich deposits were found, and most of the rocks examined 
are unpromising. The dominant geologic feature of the territory 
is that reflected in the topography — the abrupt transition from 
rugged mountain to smooth peneplain of similar rocks with a 
veneer of fragmental debris. Generally this debris is unconsoli- 
dated and fresh-looking, though sometimes it is cemented by 
siliceous or ferruginous matter, and toward the eastern side of 
Desierto Encinas even the superficial portions of the alluvium 
are somewhat indurated, as if by calcareous infiltration, into a 
mass known as caliche in western Mexico (the tepitate of eastern 
INIexico). No deposits postdating the extravasation of the lavas 
and the outlining of the mountain ranges were seen save the 
shell-charged sands of Encinas desert; these deposits and the 
shelf skirting Tassne island on north and east suggest relatively 
recent uplifting, while the configuration of shores, especially in 
Estrecho Infiernillo, demonstrates relatively recent subsidence, 
so that to one of us, at least, the combined records indicate local 
warping. To some extent in Seriland, as decidedly in contigu- 
ous Papagueria, the divides are migrating northeastwardly, and 
this widesi)read characteristic suggests a relatively recent tilting 
of the land southwestward, whereby the feeble streams- flowing 
with the increasing sloi)e are stimulated while those flowing 
against it are paralyzed. 

The meager flora of Seriland is peculiar. The conspicuous 
forms are cacti, comprising the monstrous saguesa (a Cereus 
related to f/Ujaideas but still larger) and wide-branching pita- 
liaya (Cereus Ihurheri) on the foot-slopes, with the cina (Cereus 
sehoUil) and cholla (a cylindropuntia) at lower levels and the 
water-bearing bisnaga ( Kchinocarlus) here and there on thenniin- 
land, though few and far between on the island. The ghostly 
okatillo (/'ba7/n>m .s/>/(j/tdr/ix) is fairly abundant, and there are 
occasional yuccas and a variety of the more slender agaves. The 


130 


SERI LAND 


prevailing trees, which are usually little more than shrubs, are 
mesquite, catclaw (^Acacia greggii), and paloverde {Parkinsonia 
microphglla) on plain and foothill, and paloblanca, torote, and 
torotito among the mountains ; the prevailing shrub is the creo- 
sote bush (Larrea tridentnta), with a variety of small mimosas 
and other brambles, all scrubby and all beset with thorns or en- 
dowed with foul flavors and odors ; and about' the few perma- 
nent waters there are patches of bamboo-like reeds, which are 
used l)y the Seri in making balsas and sometimes in building- 
bowers for hal)itation. It is not too much to say that there is no 
soil in Seriland, for the scant moisture and slow-growing plants 
do not produce humus; and the gray or ashen earth between 
the scattered plant-colonies glares starkly in the glowing sun- 
light, inflaming the eyes of the traveler as in snow-blindness. 
Two general features of the vegetal life of the region may l)e 
noted : Partly by reason of the absence of humus, the superficial 
deposits are comminuted mechanically but imperfectly reduced 
chemically, so that the}^ vaiy from place to place with the varia- 
tion in rocks and quantity .of water, and thereb}^ tend to produce 
local floras, or a provincial habit of the general flora ; while it 
results from the dearth of water anti strength of sun that the 
plants strive against the inorganic environment rather than 
against each other for continued existence, and are thereby 
brought into a curious cooi)eration, whereby nearly all plants 
(and animate organisms as well) gather into colonies for mutual 
support. These relations, thougli highly significant and attract- 
ive, need not be pursued here; it suffices to say that they pro- 
foundly affect the flora which, as even a casual traveler cannot 
fail to note, varies notably from place to place, and is generally 
gathered in close-set tufts or bunches, with broad bare spaces 
between-. The flora on island and mainland is essentially the 
same ; and the coasts, insular and continental, are skirted with 
a zone of i)ulpy-leaved shrubs and bushes apparently watered 
by fogs. 

The fauna of Seriland includes the bighorn and bura (a large, 
sluggish deer) in the mountains, the antelope, peccary, and black- 
tail deer on tlie plains, with the jackrabbit and coyote every- 
where ; the jaguar is reputed common and the puma rarer — the 
assemblage of large game animals being rich enough to tempt 
the sportsman. The turkey is said to haunt the saguesa forests 
and the California quail may be seen hourly, and small birds are 
surprisingly numerous, while hawks, eagles, and burrowing owls 


S ERIE AND 


131 


abound. The rattlesnake, scor[)ion, centipede, and tarantula 
furnish spice for the fare of the traveler, while rainbow-hned 
swifts and somber, slow-moving lizards of alleged poisonous bite 
harbor numerously in the scattered plant colonies. Ground- 
squirrels and kangaroo-rats are common. On some ])ortions of 
the island the squirrels abound exceedingl}^ so that the land is 
laid out in hexagons by their surface trails, while each third or 
fifth footfall of the pedestrian stops half knee-deep in subsurface 
burrows. There are ants galore, and myriads of black bugs that 
apparently fertilize the cacti, but mosquitoes, gnats, and other 
])ernicious insects are apparently unknown. The cooperation of 
the vegetation extends unto the animate life of plain and moun- 
tain to the extent that all living things dwell together in singu- 
larl}’’ perfect harmony ; but this feature of the life may be passed 
over. Along the coast the green turtle abounds and forms the 
chief fare of the Indians, and his shells shingle the more perma- 
nent house-bowers. Fish and crustaceans swarm, edible crabs 
and oysters and superb lobsters await gathering, and clams 
sprinkle the coastwise mud flats. The gray pelican breeds on 
Isla Tassne — the first-formed land of earth as built by the Ancient 
of Pelicans, in Seri myth, — and his flesh feeds, while his feathered 
skins clothe, the ever-warring holders of Seriland; and other 
water-fowl, from swan to snipe and from cormorant to curlew, 
chatter and scream and croak about the rocky islets and si)urs, 
especially on the fowls’ paradise of Isla Tassne. The seal crec))s 
up on the rocks now and then, the shark scavengers the sea as 
the coyote the land, and the skeleton of a whale fully 80 feet 
long on the shores of Tiburon records a famous feast of the Seri 
when for weeks they found no need for hunting and fishing and 
for months gnawed gradually softening tendon and cartilage. 
'I'he subdesert fauna of Seriland is meager and peculiar, but the 
maritime fauna of the coasts is rich and varied. 

The fierce holders of desert-bouml Seriland have ]>rotected 
their inheritance from time immemorial, and since the time of 
Coronado have written their history in blood. Throe of their 
many interesting characteristics are especially notable : 'riiey are 
isolated in language, belief, custom, and sympathy as in habitat; 
they are dominated 1)V a moral law under which intermarriage 
with other [)eoples is ca[)ital crime and under which they attain 
righteou.mess by slaying humans of alien blood with only greater 
avidity than beasts are slain, always save when dctemal by f(>ar ; 
and they are of a stature, strength, and endurance befitting their 
hard and eventful lives. 


132 


SERILAXD 


The coast of Seriland has been surveyed, and long ago a pearl 
fishery was maintained for a time on its borders near Punta 
Tej)opa. Tliere is a tradition that Sergeant Escalante (he who 
later swam the C4ila and saw Casa Grande) ivandered into the 
bounding desert in the seventeenth century, and dug a shallow 
well which still }nelds a yellow nitrous water and is known some- 
times as Poso Escalante, sometimes as Agua Amarillo ; and there 
are vague rumors of prospectors and other ])arties landing on 
island and mainland, but soon retreating ivith loss of life from 
])oisoned arrow or still more poignant thirst. It is known, too, 
from living witnesses that Sr Pascual Encinas pushed stock- 
raising well toward the desert and sometimes even across it to 
the saline waters at the eastern base of Sierra Seri, the Indians 
contenting themselves with a heavy im])Ost of surreptitiously 
slaughtered stock, and that he twice or oftener visited Tihuron^ 
once with a small party for a few hours, once with a larger party^ 
including horses transported by a .steam vessel, for two or three 
days; hut until 189o (when Encinas’ trustiest assistants were 
added to our party and taken far beyond their })revious knowl- 
edge) the interior, continental and insular, was never surveyed, 
most of it never seen by white men. 

The previou-sly publi.shed nomenclature is ado[)ted so far as it 
goes, together with a part of the unpublished field nomenclature 
of the Hydrographic Office, save for a few tritling exceptions 
mostly made with the object of expressing the generic elements 
in the language of Mexico (articles being omitted for brevity)- 
So far as practicable the s))ecific elements, especially on the 
insular tract, are Seri, the accents being indicated here but not 
on the map. It has been sought to use names originally con- 
notive yet of such character as readily to become denotive, due 
regard l)eing given to euphony and brevity — qualities not easily 
found among the simple-minded savages. The names a])])lied 
are as follows, those marked bv asterisks being new and those 
marked by obelisks being recast : 

* Seriland: Extra- vernacular name of tribe with English locative. 

Mar de Cortez (Sea of Cortez = Gulf of California) : Customary Spanish 
designation. 

tIslaTiburon (Shark island): Spanish. 

t Isla San Esteban (Saint Stephen island) : Spanish. 

t Isla Tas5s'ne (Pelican island) : Specific Seri (sometimes called Alcatraz 
— Pelican in Spanish). 

Estrecho [or El] Intiernillo (Hellish strait) : Spanish. 





THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


133 


t Puerta Iiifierno (Infernal gate) : Spanish. 

t Punta Tepopa (Tepopa point) : Generic Spanish, specific of long stand- 
ing. 

* Punta Ygnacio (Ygnacio point) : Specific in honor of Ygnacio Lozania, 
a trusty aid who had previously visited this point. 

* Punta Mashein' (Mashem^ point) : Specific in honor of sub-chief Ma- 
shein' (sometimes called Francisco Estorga), who speaks Spanish and 
acted as interi)reter in 1894. 

t Punta Kino (Kino point) : Specific (of long standing) in honor of the 
early missionary. 

* Sierra Seri (Seri range) : Generic Spanish, specific the extra- vernacu- 
lar tribe name. 

* Sierra Kunkaak' (Kunkaak' range) : Specific the vernacular tribe 
name. 

*Cerros Anacoreta (Anchorite hills) : Spanish. 

* Disierto Encinas (Encinas desert) : Generic Spanish, specific in honor 
of the intrepid settler on the outskirts of the desert. 

Poso Escalante (Escalante well) : Generic Spanish, specific in honor of 
the early explorer. 

Rancho San Francisco de Costa Rica: Spanish (elements transposed on 
map through error). 

Rancho Santa Ana : Spanish. 

Rancho Libertad: Spanish (now abandoned). 

Rio Sonora : Spanish. 

Rio Bacuache. 


THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 
By the late S. C. Gilman, C. E. 

[The following v.'ilnaV)le article is based largely on the explorations of the writer 
in the comparatively unknown region he describes. A melancholy interest attaches 
to it, .Mr Gilman having been suddenly cut off, at the early age of thirty-six and in the 
midst of an increasingly useful and promising career, only a few days after the trans- 
mission of the article for publication and before he could be made aware of its ac- 
ceptance.] 

The Ol 3 MHpic ])eninsula, in northwestern Washington, forms 
tlie e.xtrenie nortlnvcst corner of tlie United Sttites proper. It 
lies west of Puget sound, Admiralty inlet, and Hood’s canal, 
commonly spoken of collectively as Puget sound, and t'xtends 
over 1)0 miles along the south side of the straits of Juan de Fuca. 
Its west coast borders for 100 miles on the Paeilic ocean, while 
firay’s harbor and the Chehalis river furnish deep-water naviga- 
tion for .‘>0 miles tilong its southern border, leaving only a nock 
of 25 miles in width connecting its southeastern part with the 
mainland. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. 



i -g \ \ \ , 1 ^ \ . nN.-^ y, _ 

HE topography of THE MOUNTAINOUS REGION OCCUPYING THE CENTRAL pORTlOf^ OF THI.S MAP IS BASED ON TWc cvn, 

WHOSE ARTICLE, ‘'THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY,., appears IN Tnfs NUMbIr. «• 


GILMAN, C. E., 




THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


l.'U 

As the northern, eastern, and southern sides of the peninsula, 
bordering on Fuca straits, Puget sound, and the Chehalis river 
and Gray’s harbor, are j)artially settled and comparatively well 
known for six to ten miles back from those waters, this article 
will have reference almost exclusively to the interior and western 
portions of the peninsula. The whole peninsula contains an area 
of about 5,700 square miles, of which protiably 3,000 square miles 
arc occupied by the Olympic mountains, from which the j^enin- 
sula takes its name. 

The main watershed of these mountains begins at cape Flat- 
tery and extends southeasterly almost parallel with the straits 
and about 12 miles therefrom until nearly south of Port Angeles, 
where an abrupt turn to the south is made for about 6 miles, 
})assing by the east end of mount 0 l 3 uupus; thence southeast 20 
miles to Pj’ramid peak; thence southwest and gradually swing- 
ing to the west for 30 miles to mount Frances at the head of 
Quinault lake; thence southwest for about 18 miles, rapidly de- 
creasing in height until it reaches its termination. Such is the 
general course of the divide between the waters flowing west- 
ward to the Pacific ocean and those flowing to the north, east, and 
south into Fuca straits, Puget sound, and Gray’s harbor. From 
the main divide, and in many places exceeding it in height, 
branch out in all directions spurs and ranges, they in their turn 
rel)ranching and branching again, until the complicated rami- 
fications of mountain ridge and ])eak so completely cover the 
countiy with their rugged heights that there is hardly room for 
the gorges and can}mns and ravines that lie between, and none 
at all for valley or plain. These mountains are a com]>aratively 
recent upheaval, and nature has not yet had time to round off 
their slopes or dull the jagged sharpness of their summits. She 
has, however, through the agency of an enormous rainfall, cut 
various gigantic sluices in the rocky face of the mountains, and 
through these a large amount of detritus is brought down. 

Mount Ol^unpus, the name peak, 8,150 feet high, is the highest 
and most conspicuous mountain in the range. It was first named 
La Sierra Santa Rosalia, by Perez, in 1774, but in 1788 Captain 
John Hears saw and described it under the name of mount 
Olynqms. It is about twenty miles south of Freshwater bay on 
the straits of Fuca, and is southwest of the main divide, with 
which it connects by a short, sharp, high ridge. It is a cluster 
of sharp, jagged rock peaks projecting upward through an accu- 
mulation of ice which forms a cap two miles wide and four miles- 


THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


135 


long to the main body of the mountain. It is difficult to esti- 
mate the thickness of this ice cap. At the close of summer, when 
it is thinnest, there are ])laces where it has the appearance of 
being at least 500 feet thick. It is built up many additional feet 
in thickness by the storms of winter, to be correspondingly melted 
away again by the succeeding warm summer months. The 
Queets, Hoh, and Solduck rivers head in mount Olympus, and 
Higley and Tunnel creeks, branches of the Elwha, have their 
sources in an ice-field two miles long and three-fourths of a mile 
wide close to the northeast end of Olympus. Tunnel creek has 
formed a beautifully arched tunnel 20 feet high and 40 feet wide 
(in summer), through which it flows for two and one-half miles 
under an accumulation of ice that fills the gorge to a depth of 
100 to 300 feet. These accumulations of ice are very numerous 
among the higher peaks all through the range. 

As for scenery, perched on one of the numerous accessible 
peaks you are surrounded by towering, sky-piercing pinnacles 
and ragged, rocky ice-capped ridges that are plowed and har- 
rowed by slides of rock and ice and chiseled and worn by ages 
of rushing water, mantled with snow and garlanded with great 
patches of roses and daisies and dainty mountain flowers and 
gowned with dense, dark evergreen forests, reaching far down 
into cavernous depths of canyon and ravine, across which on 
some oppo.site mountain side is rushing down from its icy foun- 
tain head a tumultuous mountain torrent which finally dashes 
over a lofty precipice apd is lost in a veil of mist in the valley 
below. Away to the west is seen the ocean with its lazily rolling 
billows, the dark trail of a steamer’s smoke, and the white sails 
of a ship just showing above the horizon. To the east lie Hood’s 
canal and Puget sound, with their bays and arms and inlets 
si)read out like silver leaf on a carpet of green. Beyond rise the 
dark, wooded slopes and snow-clad summits of the Cascades, 
with grand old Rainier standing guard to the southeast and the 
majestic Baker to the northeast. 

flakes Cushman, Crescent, and Quinault are all of considerable 
e.\tent and great dei)th. At (iuinault lake, nearly 20 miles from 
the ocean, the boom of the breakers on the lujach is plainly 
heard during and after a storm, but the sound comes from the 
opposite direction to the ocean, being rellecti'd from the slopes of 
mount Frances on the east. For 25 miles north from the mouth 
of Cray’s harbor is a stretch of broad, smooth, hard, sand beach 
reaching to [joint Crenville. From [loint Crenville to cape 


136 


THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


Flatteiy, bluffs 100 to 250 feet high border the ocean. Some- 
times they stand a little back, leaving a narrow strip of loose 
sand, gravel, boulders, or slippery ledge between them and the 
sea. Sometimes they approach a little closer ; the strip of sand 
or rock is correspondingly narrower and covered with water as 
the tide rises. Often they push boldly into the sea, which con- 
tinually surges and dashes at their feet and leaps high up their 
face. About five miles southwest of the mouth of the Hoh 
river and four miles offshore is Destruction island, so called on 
account of the numerous wrecks that have occurred on its reefs 
and on the adjacent main shore. The island stands among 
many broad reefs, some of which are just visilde at low tide, and 
over these the ocean swells foain and boil at high tide. It rises 
abruptly, with precipitous sides, 80 feet above the water, and 
then spreads out smooth and level about 60 acres in extent. The 
Ploh Indians have long cultivated several small potato patches 
on it and have also used it as a lookout station for whale, in the 
capture of which animal they have attained great proficiency. 
The United States Government has built on the island a light- 
house of the first order, 80 feet high, with a double fog-horn and 
the usual auxiliaiy buildings. It commands a fine view of the 
coast and mountains. 

On the mountains, above 4,000 feet, the timber is very scrubby 
and infrequent, owing, probably, as much to the barrenness of the 
soil and the great depth of snowfall as to the elevation. At a 
lower altitude, among rocky crags, are thousands of acres of the 
finest grazing lands, well watered by innumerable rivulets and 
pools, fanned by the winds from the ocean, and free from flies, 
mosquitoes, and all other annoying insects. Of course, these grass- 
lands would not be habitable during the winter, but they would 
be available from the first of June until December. Among the 
rocks at the edge of the grasslands, and just below the ice-fields, 
blueberries, huckleberries, and bearberries grow in profusion, and 
the season for them lasts from July to October, as they follow 
the snow U{) as it melts away, blossoming just below it and ripen- 
ing a little lower down. These berries attract thither large num- 
bers of black bear, and it is the exception when none are in sight 
among the peaks during the beriy season. These open grass- 
lands are also favorite ranges for large numbers of the elk that 
are common all over the peninsula and bands of fifty or more 
are often seen. From 4,000 feet down, the timber is good and 
thrifty. The Alaska cedar, from one and one-half to five feet 


THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


137 


in diameter and running up smooth and tall, is a very valuable 
variet}^ of timber aud is common down to 1,000 feet above sea 
level. The mountains and uplands of the peninsula generally 
are heavily timbered with hemlock, cedar, spruce, fir, balsam, 
pine, vine-maple, alder, cottonwood, yew, cherry, etc., prevalent 
in about the order named and of the usual Puget sound size and 
quality. The valleys and bottom lands are densely covered with 
alder, vine-maple, cottonwood, willow, boxelder, crab-apj^le, ash, 
dogwood, and occasional immense bottom-land si:>ruces. There 
is frequently also a very heavy undergrowth of sallal or salmon- 
berry or of hazel or of mountain hemlock. It is also a great coun- 
try for moss, which grows deep on the ground and down timl:)er 
and on the trunks of standing trees and hangs in long streamers 
from the twigs and branches, and is always wet and slipper}^ ex- 
cept in the dry season. Many beautiful varieties of small, delicate 
ferns grow among the forests. On the prairies, which are neither 
numerous nor large, and Avhich are often gravelly, though some- 
times containing a very rich soil, a large and coarse variety of 
fern grows four to ten feet high. 

Between the mountains and the coast are about 1,300 square 
miles, or 830,000 acres, of comparatively level valley and bench 
lands. Of this about 225,000 acres are rich bottom lands along 
the various streams. The soil of these bottom lands cannot be 
surpassed an^Mvliere on the coast. The uplands are general!}’' 
rolling, but there are several quite extensive and comparatively 
level tracts. The fact of these lands not draining readily has 
encouraged the growth of fine bodies of large cedar, with, in some 
places, tall, smooth, large, white pines scattered among tliem. 
These cedar lands are in no sense swamps or bogs. The soil is 
a heavy clay, into which the sluggish streams have not cut very 
deep channels, and they are frequently clogged or turned by 
fallen timber, so that during the rains the streams overrun their 
banks and spread ]>retty much all over the country, keeping the 
ground Avell soaked all through the rainy season. There are, 
liowever, abundant facilities for drainage. The soil is excellent, 
and there are numerous small oi)enings sufficiently large for nice 
farms. The soil of the rolling u|)lands is generally a rich, shot 
clay, but sometimes quite gravelly. The timber is generally very 
heavy and it will l)e many years before all the goo<l land is under 
cultivation. There are, however, many open ))laces and small 
creek lafitoms and depressions among the hills that can be v(‘ry 
easily cleared. In fact, there are few IfiO-acre tracts on which 


138 


THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


cannot be found ten or more acres of good land comparatively 
easy to clear, and the timber on all these lands will be valuable 
in a few years and be a help instead of a hindrance in establish- 
ing a home. 

The principal streams draining this slope are the Quillyhute 
and its four branches, the Dickey, the Solduck, the Killawah, 
and the Bogachiel ; the Hoh, Quects, Quinault, and Humptulips. 
Tliey are all clear, cold, rapid streams, capable of floating logs 
and being canoed considerable distances. They teem with sal- 
mon and trout. The Quinault salmon, peculiar to that stream, 
is a short, thick fish, weighing from three to seven pounds and 
said to be the finest variety of salmon on this coast. Oppor- 
tunities for developing good water-power at very small cost are 
numerous along these streams, and especially so in the moun- 
tains. Game is plentiful, and .it would be a ])aradise for the 
hunter were it not so difficult of access. In addition to elk and 
bear, before mentioned, are deer, mountain goat, cougar, beaver, 
otter, fisher, wildcat, marmot, geese, ducks, grouse, partridge, 
quail, pelican, and many smaller or less desirable birds and 
animals. Off' the beach from Gray’s harbor to ])oint Grenville is 
one of the few sea-otter ranges of the world. It still furnishes a 
few hides of that valuable fur to market each year. 

The country rocks of the mountains are syenite, gneiss, quartz- 
ite, i)rotogene, crystalline and chlorite schists, slate (hard black 
flinty to soft green talc) shale, sandstone, trap, and basalt. In 
the foothills on tlie west and along the coast the formation is 
])rincipally shales, sandstone, cement gravel, conglomerate (in 
one place near IIoli Head, boulder conglomerate), clays and drift 
gravel and sand. Limestone much criss-crossed with small 
quartz seams is found in a few places. Claj^s are especially 
al)undant and good-appearing, and, so far as tried, give very ex- 
cellent analytic returns. Beds of partially formed lignite are 
abundant along the coast between the Quinault and Quill 3 diute 
rivers. In a bluff, a few miles south of the mouth of the Hoh 
river, four seams of such lignite, from 18 inches to 3 feet thick, 
show, lying horizontally one above the other, and separated b,y 
4 to 12 feet of sand or clay or both. In this lignite the form of 
roots, trunks, and limbs of trees, also the grain of the wood, 
show veiy distinctly, and occasional!}^ pieces of Avood, but little 
changed, are found. Small seams of very good coal crop out in 
several ]daces in sandstone and shale, but the}" are too small, so 
far as found, to l)e of any value. Between Pillar point and 


THE OLYMPIC COUNTRY 


139 


Clallam ba}’’, on the straits of Fuca, is the abandoned Thorn- 
dike coal mine. There are said to have been “ six leads of 
coal, ranging in thickness from 1 to 3 feet, dip 10 degrees, dis- 
tance between coal leads, 12 to 100 feet, formation sandstone.” 
This is said to have been one of the best coals found in Wash- 
ington. It was mined for some time, until it pinched out or was 
cut off by a fault and the vein Avas lost and Avork abandoned. 

In the valley of the Solduck riA'er, among the mountains, is a 
group of springs Avhich discharge quite a volume of hot Avater of 
undetermined medicinal value. Fine springs heavily charged 
Avith iron or sulphur are A^ei’}^ numerous. On the coast just 
south of the Queets river, in the bluff along the beach, are several 
small alum springs. The alum is present in A'ery small quanti- 
ties, and cannot be detected during the rainy season, Avhen the 
natural floAV of the springs is reinforced by the numerous rains ; 
but during the diy season, AAdien the springs are at their loAvest 
ehb and Avhen the Avater from them is evaporated A'^ery fast as it 
trickles doAvn the cliffs exposed to the afternoon sun, the alum 
marks AA'ith Avhite streaks the margin of the rivulets. There is 
also some borax present, and probably other chemicals might be 
found in measurable quantities. 

ScA^eral A'arieties of iron ore are scattered promiscuously OA^er 
the peninsula in limited quantities, and ocher and iron stains are 
numerous. Near Port ToAvnsend is a deposit of limonite that 
has been Avorked for some time. On the headAvaters of the 
Ilumptulips river is a vein of magnetite al)out one foot thick. 
On the coast south of Raft river is a bed of clay ironstone of very 
loAV grade and so badl}^ mixed Avith sulphurets as in all proba- 
bility to be Avorthle.ss. The traces of iron are so ainmdant and 
AA'idespread that it Avould seem that there must be someAvhere in 
the peninsula extensive deposits of a pure and valuable ore. 

Colors of gold are found in the beach sands and along several 
of the streams in the mountains, and in a feAV i)laces fair AA'ages 
luiA'e been made Avashing it. Low grade silver and cop))er ore 
arc found in good-sized A'eins in the mountains. Com])aratively 
little prospecting has been done, OAving to the inaccessi))ilit}^ of 
the region; not enough to determine its value as a mineral 
country. 

It does not seem reasonable to suppose that the great upheaval 
of these mountains has been aecom])lislie(l Avithout bringing 
Avithin reach some valuable mineral de])osits. The i>rineipal 
ai)i>arent wealth of the p(‘uinsula is in its immense foicsts of line 


140 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY, ALASKA 


timber, of which the Alaska cedar of the mountains will soon be 
an important factor, and in the large area of fertile valley and 
benchland on its western slope. 

The climate of the western slope of this peninsula is a little 
different from that of the rest of western Washington. Owing 
})robably to its proximity to the ocean and its acces.sibility to the 
ocean breezes, there is more wind and much le.ss foggy weather. 
The amount of rainfall on the average is in excess of that of the 
Sound country, but it comes in the shape of sharper showers and 
heavier storms, thus allowing a much greater proportion of fair 
weather. In the summer the nights are cool, but not cold, allow- 
ing tomatoes and corn to ripen ]>erfectly and naturally, as they 
do not elsewhere west of the Cascades. Except in the moun- 
tains, ice or snow is seldom seen, and then only for a few hours 
at a time. 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY, ALASKA 

By Eliza Kuhamah Scidmoke 


{The Cerdunj Dictionary) 

“Di.scover — t. To gain sight of, especially for the first time, or after a 
period of concealment ; espy ; as, land was discovered on the lee bow. 

“ Hence 5. To gain the first knowledge of, as something that was be- 
fore entirely unknown, either to men in general, to the finder, or to 
j)crsons concerned; as, Columbus discovered the new world; Newton 
dijscovered the law of gravitation ; we often discover our mistakes when 
too late, &.C. 

“6. To explore; bring to light by examination.” 

( Webster' H International Dictionary, 1892) 

“Discover — 2. To disclose; to lay open to view; to make visible; to 
reveal ; to make known ; to show ^what has been secret, unseen, or 
unknown!. 

“ 3. To obtain for the first time sight or knowledge of, as of a thing 
e.xisting already, but not perceived or known; to find out; to a,scer- 
tain ; to espy ; to detect.” 

( The Standard Dictionary) 

“Dlscover — To get first sight or knowledge of, as something previously 
unknown or unperceived; find out; ascertain; espy; detect; specific- 
ally, to find and bring to the knowledge of the vsorld ; as, to discover a comet, 
a princii»le, or plot.” 

“ It is in the highest degree probable that Lief Ericsson and his 
friends made a few voyages to what we now know to have been the 
coast of America ; but it is an abuse of language to say that they ‘ dis- 
covered’ America.” 

Fiske, Discovery of America,” vol. 1, ch. 2, p. 255. 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER T, ALASKA 


141 


In a recent communication to the Geograihiical Society of the 
Pacific, Rear-Admiral L. A. Beardslee has raised questions as to 
the discovery of Glacier bay, prompted thereto by an article liy 
Professor John IMuir, pulilished in the Century Magazine, June, 
189-5. Admiral Beardslee very tlatteringly refers to and quotes 
in proof certain published notes of my own — notes puldished in 
such condensed form for general and average tourist information 
that not all the details and facts relative to the discoveiy of and 
earliest visitors to the bay could be given. 

Vancouver’s descrii)tion would dispel some of Admiral Beards- 
lee’s references to later visitors, since he very plainly noted the 
fact that there was a navigable bay with an entrance, and wrote : 

“The shoves of the continent form two large open bays, which were 
terminated (July 12, 1794) by compact, solid mountains of ice rising per- 
pendicularly from the water’s edge and hounded to the north hy a con- 
tinuation of the united, loft\% frozen mountains that extend eastward 
from mount Fairweather. In these bays also were great quantities of 
broken ice, which, having been put in motion by the springing up of a 
norther! wind, were drifted to the south waixl.” 

The Fairweather ice-sheet extended then some 40 miles south 
of its present limit in the bay. The Russian traders aptly named 
Icy straits into which the bay debouches, and as there were no 
Indian villages on its north shore, where currents and floating 
ice made navigation dangerous, they kept away, and their charts 
" only repeated Vancouver’s lines. 

J'he first really known of the existence of this great bay of 
tide-water glaciers was in 1869, when Kloh-Kutz, the Chilkat 
chief, told Professor George Davidson of a l)ay full of breaking 
ice clifl's lying to the westward of the Davidson glacier in Lynn 
canal. It was distant only one day’s journey on snow-shoes 
(30 miles), be stated, and Kloh-Kutz urged the astronomer to 
make the little excursion with him and see the hair-seal riding 
around on ice cakes and the ice rumbling down like landslides 
into the water. The visit of ex-Secretary Seward to the eclipse 
ol)servatory ami his waiting to convey Professor Davidson hack 
to Sitka on his private steamer prevented the full discovery of 
the hay that season hy that first and greatest of Pacific coast 
scientists whose name is so inseparably connected with all of geo- 
graphic record on that side of our continent. 

In 1S77, when Lieutenant C. F. S. Wood, U. S. A., and Mr 
Charles J'aylor were ]»revented from making their pro|)ose(l ex- 
ploration of the mount St. Flias region by the mutiny of their 
10 


142 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY, ALASKA 


native boatmen, the old chief pointed to mount Fairweather and 
said : “ One mountain is as good as another. There, is a very big 
one. Go, climb that, if }’OU want to.” The disappointed ex- 
plorers were forced to turn Ijack, and then visited the most west- 
erly of Vancouver’s great ba3"s south of mount Fairweather, 
afterward named Taylor bay b}^ Coast Survey officials. In that 
most interesting and beautifully illustrated article, “ Among 
the Thlinkets,” Century Magazine, July, 1882, Lieutenant Wood 
wrote : 

“ !Mr Taylor decided to return home, and we accompanied him to Sitka. 
There I reengaged Sam and Myers, and, obtaining a new crew, returned 
at once to a bay about twenty miles southeast of mount Fairweather. 
My purpose was to explore the bay, cross the Coast range, and strike the 
upper watere of Chilkaht.” 

From that bay he “ went with a party of mountain-goat hunters 
up into the St. Elias Alps back of mount Fairweather — that is, 
to the northeast of that mountain.” He found that great game, 
also the rare St. Elias silver-tipped bear, crossed the divide to 
sight of the bush country explored Mr E. J. Glave in 1891, 
and returning to the ba}’’ spent several days, in the seal-hunters’ 
camp in Geikie inlet near the Wood glacier, as they were later 
named by Professor Reid. Lieutenant Wood had applied for a 
year’s leave of absence, with the intention of making further 
in;lependent ex[)loration in the interior of Alaska, ljut it was 
denied him. His brief reference to the Ijay in a popular maga- 
zine article cannot be accepted as Inlnging it detinitel}^ to the 
knowledge of the world, since he did not specihcally describe, 
sketch, ma]), or name any part ot the region. In ]>rivate letters 
and verbally, wlienever the subject has been Innached. Lieutenant 
Wood entirely disclaims being the discoverer of Glacier bay, and 
very modestly protested against Professor Reid’s naming for him 
the glacier beside Avhich he had camped. It was not vital.to him 
at the time that the bay was not charted ; he simpl}’- went along 
with the Hoonahs to the region where they promised great game — 
not going for glaciers nor glory, but only to shoot mountain goat 
and see the alpine region behind mount Fairweather. 

In October, 1879, Professor John Muir, who for two seasons 
had been searching for and visiting the glaciers of the Alaska coast 
from the Stikine river northward, found this bay full of glaciers 
of which native seal-hunters had told him. He, with his com- 
panions, Rev. Hall Young and four Christian Indians from Fort 
MT-angell, canoed to the head of the bay, camped for a few da}'S, 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. VOL. VII, 1896. PL. XVII. 



FRONT OF MUIR GLACIER FROM THE WEST MORAINE — MOUNT CASE IN THE BACKGROUND 





>?■ ■.■ V ?■ 

^ 1 ’ »-. ■■ ■■» p *.' 4 I 

" i' > ■ 

• /^.--^/''V.j'.Mwy«.. 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY, ALASKA 


143 


iind made the circuit of its shores. Having found these glaciers, 
he l)i’OUght them to the knowledge of the world in the series of 
letters from Alaska published in the San Francisco Evening 
Bulletin, and described them in lectures illustrated by blackboard 
sketches of these remarkable “ Fairweather glaciers.” 

In July, 1880, Captain Beardslee brought the steamer Favorite 
into the ba}%up to that time unknown to the Russian pilot who 
accompanied him. They proceeded a little beyond the island 
then named for the trader, Willoughby, who was with them, and 
then turned back, fleeing from storm-clouds and fog that greatly 
alarmed the owners of the chartered steamer, who feared the loss 
of their insurance in the event. of any disaster befalling them in 
those uncharted and dangerous waters. While Captain Beardslee 
held parle}^ with the Indians in Berg bay. Ensign Hanus made a 
ruijning surve}’’ of the lower end of the ba}’’, the lines of its north- 
ern extension and indentations being drawn in roughly from the 
descriptions of the native seal-hunters. The Indians at the same 
time told of the two white men who had come the preceding- 
year, and Captain Beardslee easily recognized Mr Muir from this 
description, the glacial prospector being well known on the coast. 
Mr Muir returned to the bay in September, 1880, and spent some 
weeks exploring the ice-fields. On his return that winter to San 
Franci.sco, he again wrote and lectured about the “ Fairweather 
glaciers,” the onl}” designation he gave to these ice-streams. 

Captain Beardslee described his visit in an official report 
(Forty-sixth Congress, Second Session, Senate Ex. Doc. No. 145), 
accompanied l»y his map of the bay, and also ])ublished an 
account in letters to Forest and Stream. B}^ his own ))ersonal 
insistence and a determined stand made at the Coast Survey 
office, (.’a|)tain Beardslee had his very apt name of Glacier ba}' 
retained on official charts, instead of giving to it the name of 
some inconsequent and now forgotten statesman whom it seemed 
oflicially desirable to flatter at the time. All ^Alaska tourists owe 
it to Captain Beardslee that this reserve of such uni)aralleled 
scenic grandeur is not vulgarized by some great misnomer. 

Captain Beardslee gave a tracing of this chart and notes to 
Captain James Carroll, and Mr Muir assured that navigator that 
there was clear navigation beyond the Beardslee islands, and 
tliat if be followed tlie eastern shores he would find anchorage 
in a broad inlet into which one of the largest glaciers l)roke away. 
Captain Carroll took the steamsliip Idaho into the bay in .luly, 
1884, found the inlet and glacier as descril>ed, and named them 


144 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY, ALASKA 


both for ]\Ir Muir. Cai)tain Mblliam George, pilot of the Idaho, 
sent a sketch maj) and notes, -with record of the names they had 
bestowed, to the Coast Survey. It was ni}’’ good fortune to be 
one of the Idaho's passengers on that voyage, and a pleasure later 
to inform Mr Muir at his Martinez ranch that the great glacier 
had been named for him. “ M’hich one of the glaciers do they 



call mine?” was his amused question and only reply. Mr INIuir 
did not bestow any names in the course of his first ice explora- 
tions in Alaska. 

The bay has not yet been surveyed and charted by the gov- 
ernment, although the Pacific Coast Steamship Compan}'’s ves- 
sels have regularly visited it since 1883 and landed thousands 


THE DISCOVERY OF GLACIER BAY, ALASKA 


145 


of enthusiastic passengers in Muir inlet. Through private enter- 
prise the Muir glacier and all its tributaries have been explored 
and mapped, and the work of Professor Harry Fielding Keid 
and his assistants leaves nothing for the delinquent government 
to do in that quarter. Mr Muir canoed across the front of the 
Grand Pacific glacier and the shores of the bay’s end in 1879; 
Professor Reid made a similar canoe cruise in 1892, and succeed- 
ing in it, accompanied Captain James Carroll, who took the large 
ocean steamer Queen around those upper reaches, found the un- 
suspected Johns Hopkins glacier, and, penetrating two deep 
inlets, discovered the hitherto unknown Rendu and Carroll 
glaciers, as then named by Professor Reid and published on the 
map accompanying Appleton’s Guide to Alaska. 

Mr Muir seems to be justly entitled to the honors as the dis- 
coverer of Glacier ba}'', since he first fulfilled the conditions 
of botli finding and bringing its wonders to the knowledge of 
the world. Lieutenant Wood, as he himself says, did not surely 
know that the bay was waiting to be found; that it definitely 
needed a discoverer, and his scant geographic references in the 
Century's pages did not altogether bring it to the knowledge of 
the world or stimulate others to explore. He awards all the 
honor to Mr INIuir. Lieutenant Wood was the Lief Ericsson, 
l\Ir Muir the Columbus, in this instance. 

. In five summer visits to Alaska, during one of which our party 
camped for several weeks in the cabin at tbe side of INIuir glacier, 
I made every effort to learn of earlier visitors than Mr Muir and 
Lieutenant Wood and to meet those mythical miners who were 
said to have known the bay well for years before the great glacial 
geologist went there. The closest questioning of those residents 
making these statements resulted in vague and foggy generalities. 
“ I guess so ; ” “I was told so ; ” ‘‘1 supposed so.” Not a fact, 
not a date, nor a definite statement, nor a j>article of proof could 
be obtained from these free and easy talkers of steamer wharves 
on toufist days. Tlie alleged miners had always “gone to the 
Yukon;” it was not known whether letters would reach them 
at Forty Mile creek or not; it was quite possil)le they liad left 
the Yukon, etc. These ready dispensers of information did not 
know the full names or the nial names of these miners; even 
“Slim Jim,” of .Juneau, could not help them there, but they 
were always sure that “a lot of miners” had prospected all 
around the bay at least one year before .Mr .Muir went tln're 
(1879), onhq tin; miners never thought it worth while to say 


146 


HYDROGRAPHY IX THE EXITED STATES 


anything “ until these tourists began making such a fuss over 
the glaciers.” Not one of them, however, had ever heard of 
Lieutenant Wood’s visit in 1877, two years before Mr Muir and 
one year before the mythical miners. 


HYDROGRAPHY IN THE UNITED STATES 

By Frederick. PI. Newell, 

Chief Ilydeographer, United States Geological Survey 

Hydrograph}' has been defined as that branch of the science 
of i)hysical geograjdiy which ])ertains to the waters of the earth’s 
surface. The river systems, the annual regimen of the streams 
and their function in sculpturing the land, the lakes with their 
fluctuations, and the oceans with their tides and currents, all 
come within the province of the hydrographer. In the United 
States explorations and discoveries in this lu’anch of geography 
are being made largely through surveys carried on by the P'ed- 
eral Government througli its various executive dejiartments — as, 
for instance, the Coast and Geodetic Survey, a bureau of the 
Treasury Deiiartment ; the Geological Survey, a part of the De- 
partment of the Interior, and others. In common use, especially 
among mariners, the term hydrograpliy is understood as per- 
taining only to marine surveying and charting, but as employed 
in scientific usage it embraces far more than the knowledge of 
the coa.sts and includes all waters, without reference to naviga- 
tion, thus covering the continents as well as the oceans. 

In tracing the order in which these hydrographic surveys are 
being made by the various organizations or Imreaus of the gov- 
ernment, it may be well to begin with the waters as they first 
occur upon the land and trace them downward in their course 
to the ocean. First in this system comes the Weather Bureau, 
which measures and records the precipitation at various j)laces. 
From these data certain general deductions can be made regard- 
ing the h}'drography of the country, Vmt the operations i)ertaining 
more directly to this subject are those incident to the prediction 
of floods along important streams. For this pur])ose the Weather 
Bureau maintains river gauges at various points, the observers 
reporting the height of water at certain intervals, and at times of 
threatened floods telegraphing the facts regarding the behavior 


HYDROGRAPHY IN THE UNITED STATES 


147 


of the stream, in order that the central office of the district or 
that at Washington may be informed in time to issue predictions 
or warnings as to impending disaster. The operations of this 
bureau, as far as they relate to the h3ulrography of the rivers and 
of the lake and seacoast navigation, are for the exclusive purpose 
of issuing prompt notices, which shall be of immediate value to 
the farmer or other resident upon the lowlands and to the sailor. 

Coming next in the scheme of the study of the waters of the 
countiy is the work of the Geological Survey, which, taking the 
facts relating to precipitation and moisture given the Weather 
Bureau and utilizing the data as to river heights as far as possi- 
ble, expands these into a general stud\^ of the occurrence of water 
within the United States, tracing out the causes, especiall}’- those 
of topographic and geologic character, which lead to variations 
in distribution and fluctuations in supplv, and in short bringing 
together material by which the water resources of the country 
may be known as thoroughly as its mineral wealth. From the 
time, therefore, that the rain reaches the ground the Geological 
Surve}^ endeavors to trace its course on or below the surface and 
to ascertain the laws governing its circulation and its reai)pear- 
ance by seepage or through natural outlets in springs or in arti- 
ficial openings, such as artesian or other wells. 

This Surve}", as incidental to the preparation of the great map 
of the United States, examines in detail the surface of the country, 
determines the age and character of the rocks, their structure and 
position with relation to each other, their permeability or im- 
l)erviousness to water, and the probal)ilities of their l)eing able 
to _yicld a .suppl v at points not yet penetrated l^y the well-digger. 
As in all scientific work, the ultimate object is that of prediction, 
of revealing that Avhich is now unknown or but partly under- 
stood. Such extension of knowledge rests ui)on a thorough ex- 
amination and understanding of the history of the ]>ast and of 
the conditicjns in the present. Before questions can be answered 
as to what is the probable supply of water at this or that point, 
for ))Ower, f(jr irrigation, or for municipal supply, it is nece.ssary 
that long-continued and aceurat<‘ work be done. 

'I'he Work of the United States (Jeological Survey n'lating to 
water resources is carried on by the Division of 1 Ivdrograidiy. 
The field operations of this division consist of the nuaisurement 
at selected j)oints of the flowing waters of springs, erc(‘ks, and 
rivers, the estimation of the discliarge of artesian wells, and of 
the (piantities of water which can be obtained bv other metins. 


148 


HYDROGRAPHY IN THE UNITED STATES 


Permanent river stations are estaljlished at man}" points on im- 
})ortant streams, usually near their headwaters, and daily records 
kept of the fluctuations. These fluctuations are in turn inter- 
preted into quantities of discharge by means of measurements of 
area and velocity made at .short intervals by the hydrograi)hers. 
The quantities thus ascertained furnish the basis for compari- 
sons day by day, month by month, and year l)y year, throwing 
light U])on the relation Ijetween preci})itation and discharge, 
and upon the modifying influences introduced by topography, 
geologic structure, and cultural conditions. The non-periodic 
fluctuation of waters, the questions of erosion, transportation) 
and sedimentation, the apj)earance and di.sapjiearance of surface 
streams and the minerals in solution are all matters connected 
more or less directly with this .study of stream behavior. 

The surveys of the surface streams, their sloj)e as oldained by 
the toi)Ographers, their volume as measured l)y the hydrogra- 
])hers, and their composition as determined h}" the chemist, are, 
however, simjfle matters in comparison with; those which relate 
to the waters immediately beneath the surface. In the fir.st case 
the ])henomena are visible and tangible; in the second, keen 
ol)servati(jn must he followetl by correct reasoning from well- 
established facts and conclusions. The occurrence of under- 
ground water in quantities sufficient to be of value, its character 
as regards mineral contents, and the ])ressure under the influence 
of which it may rise toward the surface, are all details which 
vary with the geology of the i)articular area. To be aide to i)re- 
dict that water can be found at a given })lace, at a certain depth, 
and in quantity, it is necessary to know thoroughly all the facts 
which can be ascertained concerning the geology of the region. 
ToAvard this end the Geological Survey is collecting and i)utting 
ui>on record all obtainable data concerning deep Avells, Avhether 
successful or not, and is making examinations of the Avater-bearing 
rocks Avherever they come to the surface or are penetrated by 
underground Avorkings. In the course of the prei)aration of the 
systematic sheets, de.signed ultimately to coA’er the AA'hole country, 
much of this AA’ork has been done, but in certain ]Aortions of the 
country, such as the subhumid, Avhere information is needed in 
advance of the completion of these atlas .sheets, the held exami- 
. nations of the hydrogra])hic division are l)eing pushed forAA'ard 
for this one object. The inve.digations of this division are thus 
seen to touch very closely the Avork of the Weather Bureau in its 
records of precipitation and in its material for flood prediction, 


HYDROGRAPHY IN THE UNITED STATES 


149 


and to connect these intimately with the mapping of the topog- 
rapher and the studies of the geologist. 

Passing from the many small streams of the country to the 
larger, navigable rivers, the work of the Engineer Coi’i^s of the 
Arm}'’ is reached. As far as this relates to hydrography, the sur- 
veys of the Engineer Corps consist of examinations of particular 
points with the object of obtaining information preliminary to 
construction for the benefit of navigation. A considerable num- 
ber of river gauges have been maintained and readings continued 
in order to ascertain the periods of low and high water and to 
obtain other data essential to correct plans. A few measure- 
ments of volume havebeen made upon some of the larger streams. 
^^'ith the work of the Engineer Corps can l)e placed that of the 
INIississippi and Missouri River Commissions, these organizations 
having conducted series of observations throwing light upon the 
behavior of these great rivers. Nearly related to this has been 
the work of the Lake Survey, conducted by army engineers, who 
have ju’epared detailed maps of the shores, showing the harbors, 
passages, and depths of water at all the shallow places. 

At the head of tide water begins the work of the United States 
Coast and Geodetic Survey. This, the oldest of the surveying 
organizations of the Government, maps the navigable tidal waters 
of the United States from the remotest waters to tlie shore line 
and from the shore lipe outward to the oceanic abyss, studying 
the currents and fluctuations of water surface and map])ing in 
great detail the harbors, shoals, cliannels, and all other features 
■of importance to mariners. The investigations of this Survey 
have Ijeen conducted with the utmost accuracy, and its charts 
and ])ublications relating to hydrograi)hy have reached tlie 
liighcst ])oint of scientific attainment. With the work of the 
Coast Survey may be considered that of tlie Light-house Board, 
also a bureau of the Treasury Department, which in a relatively 
more limited and less detailed way has made hydrogra])hic sur- 
veys for the ])urp()se of erecting danger signals or light-houses, 
and has thus contributed somewhat to the knowledge of the 
navigable waters. 

Extending beyond the bounds of the Uniteil States, our knowl- 
edge of the hydrography of the great s(‘as is being added to by 
the Hydrographic OHice ol' the Navy, which bi-ings together and 
]»ublishes maps, charts, and everything of interest to mariners 
relating to foreign lands, and covering with jierhaps less minute- 
ness the shores of other countries in a iminner similar to that 


150 


RECENT TRI ANGULATION IN THE CASCADES 


with which the Coast Survey has mapj^ecl out the waters of the 
United States. 

Historically the investigations set on foot l)y the Smithsonian 
Institution should be noticed, for from these has come, directly 
or indirectly, nearly all our information concerning hydrograj^hy 
in its broader aspect. The systematic study of precipitation was 
first begun under this institution, and after being well established 
was turned over to the Signal Office, the predecessor of the 
^^’eather Bureau. In other lines the Smithsonian Institution 
has in similar manner shown the way, and when feasible has 
entrusted the continuation of the investigations to other organ- 
izations, in order that it might concentrate its own energies on 
other original lines of research tending to “the increase and dif- 
fusion of knowledge.” 


RECENT TRIANGULATION IN THE CASCADES 

By S. S. Gannett, 

United States Geological Survey 

During the field season of 1895, the United States Geological 
Survey extended triangulation over a portion of central Wash- 
ington. An astronomical determination of Ellensburg having 
been made, a Ijase was measured on the roadbed of the Northern 
Pacific railroad. From this base, triangulation Avas extended 
into the Cascade mountains. Horizontal angles Avere measured 
Avith an eight-inch theodolite, reading by micrometers to tAvo 
seconds of arc. Vertical measures Averc also taken upon some of 
the more prominent peaks, angles being measured by a vertical 
circle four and one-half inches in diameter and reading by ver- 
nier to one minute of arc. EleAUitions are based upon the height 
of the Northern Pacific railroad at Ellensburg. 

The ])reliminary comi)utation gives the eleA’ation of mount 
Aix, by recii)rocal observations to and from stations in the base 
ex|iansion, 28 miles distant, as 7,815 feet above sea level. 

Mount Rainier, by foresights from mount Aix, 24 miles dis- 
tant, is found to be 14,532 feet, mount Adams, likeAvise l)y fore- 
sights from mount Aix, 42 miles distant, 12,470 feet, and mount 
Stuart, by foresights from several stations in the base expansion 
24 to 30 miles distant, 9,500 feet, above sea level. 


THE ALTITUDE OF MOUNT ADAMS, WASHINGTON 


By Edgar McClure 

On July 10. 1895, in company with the heliograph party of 
the Mazamas,* I carried a mercurial barometer to the summit of 
mount Adams, a snow-capped peak in the Cascade range, in the 
southern part of the state of Washington. 

M^e traveled from Eugene, Oregon, by rail to Portland, Oregon 
thence b}’’ steamer down the M^illamette river to its mouth, and 
thence up the Columbia river to M^hite Salmon landing. From 
this last-mentioned point we traveled north by Avagon road 27 
miles to Trout lake, and thence by trail, still northward, 14 miles 
to the snow line on the mountain side. This camp was called 
Mountain VieAV camp, and is situated near the foot of the Mdiite 
Salmon glacier. From this point it is a continuous climb of four 
miles to the summit of the mountain. 

The instrument used AA^as barometer No. 1612, made by James 
Green, of Brooklyn, New York. It AA^as compared Avith the 
’Weather Bureau instrument at Portland, Oregon, and Avith the 
large standard barometer belonging to the State Weather Service 
at the University of Oregon, at Eugene, Oregon. Parallel ol)ser- 
Auitions Avere made by previous arrangement at Portland, Oregon, 
Eugene, Oregon, and Seattle, M’’ashington. 

Mountain View camp, at the snow-line, Avas left at 4:30 a. m. 
on July 10, and the summit of the mountain Avas reached about 
11:00 a. m. The ascent Avas madeover a large snoAV-field imme- 
diately west of a long lava ridge Avhich runs southeastward Irom 
the summit of the mountain. The climl) is long and hard, l)ut 
it has no points of danger along the route. The summit Avas 
left for the return trip about 4:00 p. in. and camp Avas reached 
about 5:30 p. m. 

Observations began on th'e summit at 12:30 p. m. and Avere 
continued until 3:3') p. m. 'Phe air thermometer having been 
accidentally broken on the evening before the climb, the air 
temperature on the summit was taken from the attached ther- 

* Tho Mu/.nmnH Ih an iiMSociiition of mniintiiin olimlicrs, witli liciul'nmrtors ut Port 
Inml. Oronori. Tlio object of the orKanizittioii in the colle<'tion of Hcientific ilutii coii- 
eerniriK the moiintaiiiH of Orej;oii niid WiiHbiiiKton. 


152 THE ALTITUDE OF MOUNT ADAMS, WASHINGTON 


inometer by subtracting three degrees. Parallel readings, taken 
iit Trout lake and Mountain View camp, of the attached ther- 
mometer and the air thermometer, before the latter was broken, 
gave readings of the latter 2° and 3° below the former. The 
belief that the reading on the summit of the mountain on the 
-afternoon of the climb would have been in the same proportion 
is strengthened h}^ the fact that the air temperature shown by the 
nir thermometer used with the boiling-point apparatus closely 
corresponded with my air temperature obtained in the manner 
above stated. 

OBSERVATIONS. 


Portland, Oregon. 


Seattle, Washington. 


State Weather Bureau, July 10, 1895. 


P. M. 

Barograph. 

Thermograph. 

1:00 

29.80 

90 F. 

2:00 

29.79 

92 “ 

3:00 

29.77 

93 “ 


Pref-sure figures corrected for tem- 
perature. Barometer 157 feet above 
sea level. 

B. S. Payne, 

Director. 


Eugene, Oregon. 


Univer 

sity of Oregon, 

July 10, 1895. 

P. M. 

Standard 

Exp. 

barometer. 

thermometer. 

1:00 

29.380 

93.5 

2:00 

29.374 

94.0 

3:00 

29.361 

95.0 


Weather Bureau, July 10, 1895. 


P. M. 

Barograph. 

Thermograph. 

1:00 

29.875 

85 F. 

2:00 

29.865 

86 “ 

3:00 

29.850 

87 “ 


Pressure figures corrected for tem- 
perature. Barometer 119.4 feet 
above sea level. 

George N. Salisbury, 

Observer. 


Summit of Mount Adams, Washington. 
Mazama Expedition, July 10, 1895. 


P. ii/. 

Barometer 

Air 

No. 1612. 

temperature. 

1:00 

19.256 

38.0 

2:00 

19.272 

38.5 

3:00 

19.281 

43.0 


Pressui’e figures corrected for tem- 
perature. Barometer 485.7 feet 
above sea level. 

S. II. McAlister, 

Observer. 


Pressure figures corrected for tem- 
perature. Cistern of barometer 1.1 
feet above the level of snow. 


The calculations were made h}^ two methods — by iMajor R. S. 
M’illiamson’s tables, based on Plantamour’s formula, and by 
Guyot’s tables. In the former case, since no observations were 
taken to determine the humidity of the air, the temperature cor- 
rection Avas calculated by the formula of La Place. Three esti- 
mates Avere made on each place as a base from observations taken 
at 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00 o’clock p. m. This gives nine estimates 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


155 


by each method, or a total of eighteen estimates on the elevation 
of the peak. The two results agree within 44.7 feet. 

P. M. Williamson. Guyot. 


Portland, Oregon 1:00 12,459.8 12,413.5 

2:00 12,457.7 12,412.4 

3:00 12,495.3 12,449.8 

Mean 12,470.9 12,425.2- 

Seattle, Washington 1:00 12,427.8 12,382.6 

2:00 12,414.4 12,.369.2 

3:00 12,458.1 12,411.8 

Mean 12,433.4 12,387.9- 

Eugene, Oregon 1:00 12,436.6 12,393.8 

2:00 12,414.0 12,371.1 

3:00 12,455.7 12,412.6 

Mean 12,4.35.4 12, .392.5 


Grand mean 12,446.6 12,401.9 


The mean of these two estimates, 12,446.6 and 12,401.9, is 12,424.2. 

Trout Lake and iMonntain View Camp. — An estimate based on 
observations made before the climb gives the following eleva- 


tions : 

Trout lake (camp at Wagnitz place) 1,854 feet. 

^Mountain View camp (snow line, July 10, 1895) 5,714 feet. 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 

Archeological Studies among the Ancient Cities of Mexico. Part I : l\Ionu- 
ments of Yucatan. By William H. Holmes. Pp. 137, with 18 plates. 
Chicago, 1895. 

This is the eighth publication of the Field Columbian IMuseum and the 
first of the Anthropological series. It opens with an itinerary of tlie 
voyage of the yaclit /Omu (tlie property of i\Ir Allison A'. Armour), which 
sailed fromXew York December 16, 1894, and reached the coast of A'ucatan 
a fortnight later, carrying a scientific party lieaded l>y Professor Holmes ; 
and thereafter, for two months, the services of the vessel and the energies 
of the party were devoted to researches in the land of ancient cities. 
Ever since the compiest Yucatan has been noteil for ruins of astonishing 
magnificence, and the names c>f the ancient cities, Palemiueand Chichen- 
Itza and Uxmal, an? hanlly less known than those of ))iesent population 
centers. 8te|»hens, Maudslay, Bandelier, Charnay, and other archeolo- 
gists have drawn on the rich store of records of ancient culture allorded 
by these citic'S, and the liC IMong(*ons, husband and wife, have made 
voluminous collections ainl evolved curious speculations amid the ruins ; 
and mnv a well-known archcohjgist and artist has traversed this singu- 


154 


GEOGRAPHIC LITER A TURE 


larl\" fertile field, and, with the aid of camera and pencil, has reproduced 
some of the most striking features of the ancient work. The ]>hotographs 
are excellent and remarkably well reprodiu-ed ; the author’s device of 
representing the ruins in i)anoramas, with the mantle of vegetation 
omitted, is quite effective, and the wealth of detail depicted in the minor 
drawings adds much to the value of the book. In this treatise and the 
succeeding ])art, which is i>romised soon to follow, a clear and faithful 
picture of the Yucatec ruins will be found; and the great IMuseum at 
Chicago is to be felicitated as the i)atron of the research and the depository 
of the collections growing out of it. 

Geolof/iral Hhtorii of Ihe Chantauqua Grape Belt. Bulletin No. 109, Cornell 

T^niversity Agricultural Plxperiment Station, Ithaca, N. Y. By R. S. 

Tarr. Pp. 30, with maps and illustrations. 

This is issueil as the first specific attempt in this country on the part 
of an exiieriment station to analyze the physical geography of a fruit belt. 
Notwithstanding most excellent opportunities, very little has been at- 
tempted in the United States in the way of studying the conditions of 
soil and climate existing in what may be called type fruit regions. It is 
obvious that such studies, if properly carried on, would be of great prac- 
tical value, for if once the conditions prevailing in the type regions for 
certain fruits were thoroughly understood it would be possible within 
given limits to determine the practicability of growing such fruits in other 
sections of the country. Work bearing on this subject has for several 
years lieen in jirogressby Professor Milton Whitney, of the United States 
Department of Agriculture, and as a result the geological and physical 
characteristics of the type soils for several important crops have been 
worked out. The work. by Profe.ssor Tarr, although somewhat different 
in its character, has the same object in view, namely, that of ascertaining 
the natural conditions existing in a region famous for the excellence of 
one of its ju-oduc.ts, in this instance the grape. Professor Tarr has con- 
lined his studies largely to the geological side of the question, first discuss- 
ing the topography and then following with a consideration of the bed 
rock. The different kinds of soils and their relative values are also dis- 
cussed. Altogether the bulletin is very interesting, and is especially 
valuable as taking up a line of work that has been somewhat neglected. 

Die Liparisclien Lmda. In eight Parts, fully illustrated with excellent 

wood cuts of Sket(dies by F redricb Hawranek. Prag. Ileinr. Mercy, 1895. 

This handsome work gives a compk?te ])icture of the present condition 
of these interesting historical islands and contains much information of 
value to the student and traveler. Each of the first seven parts is de- 
voted to an elaborate illustration of one of the islands, with a brief de- 
scription of its natural features and culture. One cannot but regret that 
the numerous illustrations of these remarkable volcanic islands are drawn 
wholly from sketches instead of from photographs, which have so much 
higher a value as a source of information. For example, in part 5, chapter 
III, the illustrations of the cavernous coast show no definite relation of 
the caverns and arches to the structure of the rock, as is well known to 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


155 


be the case along coasts of volcanic rocks. An excellent hachnre-shaded 
contour map is given of each island, on a scale in some cases as large as 
1:25000. The eighth ]>art contains, besides a map of the whole group, 
brief descriptions of the climate, sea, anchorage, springs, flora, fauna, and 
poi)ulation of the islands, as well as fuller accounts of the occui)ations of 
the j)eople, their habits, customs, and commerce, with their means of 
intercommunication and accommodations for tourists. 


PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 
SOCIETY, SESSION i 895-’96 

Special HeeCuKj, Febraari/ 28, 1896. — Vice-President Greely in the chaii'. 
Mrs Fannie B. Ward read a narrative of Two Years’ Travel in and about 
South America, illustrated by lantern-slides, mostly from original draw- 
ings and i)hotographs. 

Special Meeting, Slarch 2, 1896. — First lecture of the course of seven illus- 
trated Monday afternoon lectures descriptive of a trip to Alaska. Presi- 
dent Hubbard in the chair. IMr W J IMcGee described the route from St. 
Paul, Minnesota, to Banff, Alberta, and Mr Bailey Willis an excursion 
to Mount Rainier, Washington. Both addresses were illustrated by 
lantern-slides. 

Regular Meeting, March 6, 1896. — Vice-President Merriam in the chair. 
^Ir F. V. Coville read a paper, illustrated by lantern-slides, on the Adaj)- 
tations of Plants to Desert Environment. The pa])er was discussed by 
Mr W J IMcGee, Surgeon-General George IM. Sternberg, U. S. A., Mr G. K. 
Gilbert, Dr C. Hart Merriaiii, and otliers. 

Special Meeting, March 9, 1896. — Second ^londay afternoon lecture. 
President Hubbard in the chair. Prof. Charles E. Fay, of Tufts College, 
^Massachusetts, ilelivered an address on the Glaciers, Peaks, and Canyons 
of the Canadian Rockies, illu.strated by lantern-slides. 

Special Meeting, March 12, 1896. — Reception at the Arlington Hotel to 
the Venezuelan Boundary Commission. Presiilent Hubbard and a com- 
mittee of ladies, headed by Mrs liichard Olney, received the Society’s 
guests and presented to them u])wards of 400 of the members of the So- 
ciety ainl their friends. 

Special Meeting, .March IS, 1896. — President Hnl)bard in the chair. i\Ir 
C. E. Borchgrevink, of Norway, adilressed the Society, giving a grai)hic 
description of his voyage to the .Cntarctic continent, and exhibiting a 
number of lantern-slide reproductions of photographs. 

Special .Meeting, .March 16, 1896 . — Third Monday afternoon lecture. 
President Huhhard in tlnichair. IMr. lames Fletcher, of Ottawa, Cainnla, 
de.scrih(Ml the triji from the Canadian National Park to the Pacific Coast, 
illustrating his adflress hy means of lantern-slides ami specimens of the 
flora and fauna of the region traversed. 


156 


MISCELLANEA 


Rrfjnhir Meeting, March 20, 1806. — Vice-Presi«lent Gannett in the chair. 
3Ir N. II. Darton read a paper, illustrated by lantern-slides, on the 
Physiographic Development of the District of Columbia Region, tie was 
followed by ^lajor Gilbert Thompson, who spoke on the Use of Geodetic 
Control Lines in Geogi'aphic Work. 

Special Meeting, March 23, 1896. — Fourth Monday afternoon lecture. 
President Hubbard in the chair. Lieut. A. P. Niblack, L’’. S. N., de- 
scribed the trip, “From Puget Sound to Sitka; Fiords, Islands, and 
Canals,” with lantern-slide illustrations. 

Elections. — New members have been elected as follows: 

Fehruarg 28. — Rev. Dr Alfred II. Ames, Edward Burge.ss, Prof. J. A. I. 
Cassedy, Rev. Ernst Drewitz, D. Wallace Duncan, O. J. Edwards, Miss 
Mary H. Elliott, James Fletcher, A. B. de Guerville, Dr Herbert Harlan, 
Chr. Heurich, Dr A. L. Howard, W. J. Lampton, Edmond S. Meany, 
Daniel Murray, Rev. Jos. B. North, Walter T. Paine, Col. Henry A. Pierce, 
'Win. 11. Saunders, H. Jaudon Smith, Chas. C. Snow, Chas. M. Staley, 
W . P. Van Wickle, Win. G. Webster, S. T. 'White, John W. Winder, 
Dr D. P. M'olhaupter, F. G. Wiirdemann. 

March 20. — Perry Allen, Judge Victor Barringer, Miss ^larie E. Bying- 
ton, Henry A. Curtis, James A. Edgar, Dr R. Farnham, Henry F. Getz, 
Francis R. Hart, .Mrs \. G. Hensley, Marshall H. Jewell, Prof. L. M. 
Keasbey, Chief Engineer Absalom Kirby, U. S. N., F. R. McCormick, 
Lieut. A. P. Niblaek, U. S. N., Miss M. L. Nicholson, Frederick Law 
Olmsted, Jr., Leojioldo S. Pietra, D. ^1. Quackenbush, C. C. Randolph, 
W. L. Symons, Hon. G. P.Wetmore, U. S. S., Wm.AVhelan, 'W. D.M’ilco.v. 


MISCELLANEA 

The Congress of Chambers of Commerce at Bloemfontein, South Africa, 
has resolved to adhere to meridian 22° .”0' east as the standard time for 
South Africa. 

The total output of gold in the seven Australasian colonies in 1895 is 
oflicially announced as 2,350, -562 ounces, an increa.se of 106,928 ounces 
over the production in 1894. 

The salmon pack of the Columbia river last year amounted to 655,410 
cases, of the airgregate value of S3, .342,928. The industry gave employ- 
ment to 3,775 fishermen and to 1,574 cannery operatives. 

The population of the city of Melbourne at the end of 1895 is officially 
reported as 447,461, an increase during the year of 8,.506. The estimated 
population of the seven Australasian colonies at the end of 1895 was 
4,238,000, an increa.se of 11.25 per cent since the census of 1891. 

Upw.\ri)S of 100,000 bales of .\merican and Egyptian cotton have l^een 
received at 5Ianchester, via the ship canal, since September last. There 
has also been a very large increase in the receipts of lumber and other 
raw products, and much concern is again being felt in Liverpool as to the 
probable effect of this great enterprise upon the commerce of that city. 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 


TOURS THROUGH TOLTEC TOWNS. 

The travel into Mexico annually becomes larger as people 
come to realize the novelty of the delightful journey and the 
ease and cheapness with which it can be made via the Southern 
Pacific aud connecting lines in Mexico. At Spofford Junction 
the Northern and Eastern tourist, who has presumabl}^ taken the 
Southern Pacific at New Orleans because of its quick and direct 
service and splendid equipment, finds his sleeper switched from 
the main line, and a waiting train speedily takes him to Eagle 
Pass and the Rio Grande. His car goes direct to the City of 
Mexico via the Mexican International and Mexican Central 
Railways, and the way leads through some of the most beauti- 
ful and inspiring .scenery in the world. The whole native life 
is so quaint and so at variance with all preconceived ideas — so 
different from anything one sees in the United States — that the 
tourist is in a constant tremor of excitement and finds himself 
continually edified and interested. The life of the cities is no 
less unique than is that of the rural district. Making the City 
of Mexico a center, a great many points may be profitably vis- 
ited — from the snow-clad summits of the great mountains to the 
lowlands where the coffee and banana plantations .sweep to 
the seacoast. P'or adflilional information call on or write to 8. F. 
R. Morse, General Passenger Agent, vSouthern Pacific, New 
Orleans, La. 


1 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 


B 


Y TAKING THE 


SHASTA ROUTE 


On Your Return from 

^CALIFORNIAN 

You Can See the Original of this Scene. 



RAPIDS NEAR UPPER FALL. 

ft is in the YELLOWSTONE PARK, and can be reached 
on your return from CALIFORNIA if you witl see that your 
ticket reads as above. In addition you will see 

MT. SHASTA, MT. HOOD, and MT. TACOMA, 

the Giant Peaks of the Pacific Coast, and pass through Port- 
tand, Tacoma, Seattle, Spokane, Helena or Butte, Missoula, 
Bismarck, Fargo, Minneapolis, and St. Paul. 

Send me 6 cents for 

SKETCHES OF" WO ISi D E R l_ A N D. 

CHAS. S. FEE, Qen. Pass. Agent, 

Northern Pacific Railroad, St. Paul, flinn. 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 



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NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 


National Geographic Monographs 

On the Physical Features of the Earth’s Surface, desig-ned especially to supply to teachers and 
students of geography fresh and interesting material with which to supplement the regular text-book. 


I.IST OF MONOGRAPHS COMPRISING VOEUME I : 


General Physiographic Processes . - - - 

General Physiographic Features 

Physiographic Regions of the Fnited Statijs 
Beaches and Tidal Marshes of the Atlantic Coast 
Present and Extinct Lakes of- Nevada - - - 

Appalachian Mountains— Northern Section 
Appalachian Mountains— Southern Section - 
Mt. Shasta- a Typical F'xtinct Volcano . - - 

The New England Plateau 

Niagara Falls and Its History 


|j. W. Powell 

Prof. N. S. Shaler 
Prof. I. C. Russell 
Bailey Willis 
C. Willard Hayes 
J. S. Hiller 
Prof. W. M. Davis 
G. K. Gilbert 


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Mr. Cyrus C. Adams, New York. 

Dr. Cyrus Adler, Smithsonian Institution. 

Mr. iMarous Baker, U. vS. Geological Survey. 

Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. vS. N. 

I)r. Francis Brown, Union Theol. vScminary. 

Mr. R. L. Corthell, C. R., New York. 

Dr. Rlliott Cones. 

Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
American Rthuolog}'. 

Dr. Charles W. Dal)uey, Jr., .Assistant ,Secre- 
tary of Agriculture and President (on leave) 
of the Tennessee State University. 

Dr. Win. H. Dali, Smithsonian lu.stitution, 
Pres, of the Phil. Society of Washington. 

Dr. George Davidson, President of tlie Geo- 
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Mr. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological vSurvey. 

Mr. Wm.lM. Davis, Professor of Physical Geog- 
raphy in Harvard University. 

Dr. David T. Day, Chief of the Div. of IMining 
Statistics and Technolog)', U. ,S. Geol. Sur. 

•Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Hull. John W. h'oster, ex-Secretary of State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Topographer, U. S. 
Geol. Sur. and Geographer of i ilh Census. 

Mr. G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey, 
Pres, of the Geol. Society of Washington. 

iien. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief .Signal 
Officer, War Department. 

Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
National Geograjihic Society. 

Dr Alark W. Harrington, President f>f the Uni- 
versity of the State of Wa.shiiigton. 

bieiit. I'lverett Hayden, U. S. N., Secretary of 
the National Geograjihic Society. 

Mr. Win. H. Holmes. Dir. of the Dept, of .\n- 
throjiology, I'ield Coliini. Mu.seiim, Chicago. 

Dr. I'hnil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. Sheldon Jack.soii, Ib S. Commissioner of 
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Mr. George Keiinan. 

Prof. William Ribbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Rth- 
nology. 

Mr. John R. McGrath, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S- N. 

Dr. T. C. iMeiidenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Ma.ss. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Oruithologi.st and Mani- 
nialogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John II. Mitchtdl, U. S. S. 

Prof. W. R. Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. Frederick II. Newell, Chief Ilydrographer 
of the U. S. Geological .Survey. 

IMr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coa.st Survey. 

Rieut. Roliert R. Peary, U. S. N. 

IMrs. Robert R. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. .S. .S. 

Mr. William II. Pickering, Professor of Astron- 
omy in Harvard University. 

jMajor John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of American Rthiiology and President of the 
Anthropological .Society of Washington. 

Prof. W. B. Powell, Superintendent ol Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Hon. John R. Procter, President of the U. S. 
Civil .Service Commi.ssion. 

IMr. Israel C. Ru.s.sell, Professor of Geology in 
the University of IMichigan. 

Dr. N. .S. Shaler, Profes.sor of Geology in Har- 
vard University. 

Commander Charles I). .Sigsbee, Ilydrographer 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Navy Itept. 

Aliss Rliza Ruhamah .Scidmore. 

Commander Z. R. Tanner, U. .S. N. 

Mr. I'rar.k Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U. .S. 
Geological .Survey. 

Mrs. I'annie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


PRINCIPAL CONTENTS OF RECENT NUMBERS. 

JANUARY. Russia in liurojie, with maj), Hon. G.irdiner G. Hubbard; 'I'he .Arctic Cruise 
of the U. .S. Revenue Cutter “ Bear,” with illustrations. Dr. Sheldon Jackson ; The 
Sco])c and \’ahu‘ ol Arctic Rxjiloration, Gen. .A. W. Greelv. 

FEBRUARY. Venezuela: Her Government, Peo])le, ;nul Bonmlary, with ma]) and illustra- 
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Hid; 'I'he 'rehuante]iec .Sliij) Rinlw.iy, with maps, R. R. Corthell, C. !(., RR. D. ; 'I'he 
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This ininihrr ron/aitis a ///n/> of llir volh-y of ihr (h inoco, s/hneiuy /hr rxtrut of tnriloyy 
hoiurd hv Hull -ouilrntuiv ami thr hrai iity U has on thr I 'riir-itrlaii Houmlary (Jitrs/ioti. 

MARCH. — 'I'he .So-Called ‘‘Jeaniutle Relics,” Prof. Wm. II. Dali ; N.iiisen's Polar Rxpedi- 
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Italian Possessions. 




JUDD A DETWEII.ER, PRINTERS, WASHINGTON, D. C. 


MAY, 1896 


No. 5 



! i ' I 

Honorary Editor : JOHN; HjYDE 

Honlorary Associate Edit(j>rs 
'W J ^cQEE ELIZ^ HTJECAMA.H SCIDjkfO 




pONXPNTS / / / 

AFRICA SINCE 1888, WITB'i^EClAL REFERENCE TO SPUTaVpMCA 
AND ABTsSinia. With taap. HON. 0.4liDINBR O. ’HOBBARD. 
^Accompanied by portrait of Presjldent Hubbard.) 

FPNDAMENTAL OEOORAPHIc'^LATION ,6f the THREE AMERI- 
CAS. With map. ; ROBERT T. HILL 

THE KANSAS RIVER ' ' a 

i ARTHUR P„ DAVIS. 

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I 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XVIIL 



HON. GARDINER GREENE HUBBARD, LL. D., 
Piesidenl of the \at tonal Geographic Society. 



THE 



VoL. VII MAY, 1896 No. 5 


AFRICA SINCE 1888, WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO 
SOUTH AFRICA AND ABYSSINIA* 

By Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, LL. D., 

'President of the National Geographic Society 

Eight years ago I selected Africa as the subject of ni}'- annual 
address before the National Geographic Societ}". Since then the 
nations of Europe, seeking new outlets for trade and possible 
homes for their surplus population, have taken possession of the 
larger part of the continent. They have developed Africa more 
rapidly than in an}’’ preceding age, and have greatly increased 
our knowledge of it. 

Africa and America were discovered about the same time — the 
one by Portugal, the other by Spain. Soon afterward the slave 
trade was established between the two continents to supply the 
place of Indian labor, the natives of America, unable to stand the 
tasks imposed ui>on them liy the Spaniards, having been extermi- 
nated. This trade proved so profitable that England soon took 
part in it, exchanging her })roducts for slaves transj)orted to 
the Spanish colonies in America. This continued for two hun- 
dred and fifty years, or until the early j>art of the nineteenth 
century, when the slave trade was abolished and the trade in 
intoxicating liquors substituted, which has been to the African 
a greater evil than the slave trade. A recent writer says that 
four million gallons of the most jtoisonous gin and rum arc im- 
ported yearly into the Nagos and Niger coast protectorates. 

•Annual presidential address, delivered April 24, 1890. 

11 


158 


AFRICA SINCE 188 S 


Xearl}^ half a centuiy ago two or three large mercantile firms 
of Hamburg and Bremen established trading stations on the 
west coast of Africa. Their jjrofits were very large, as, in ex- 
change for rum, trinkets, beads, and worthless arms, cocoanut oil, 
ivory, india-rubber, and other tropical products were obtained. 
This trade finally resulted in the starting of a regular line of 
steamers from Hamburg to the west coast, and also of one 
through the Suez canal to the east coast. Prince Bismarck real- 
ized that he had a most urgent problem to solve, either to re- 
strain German emigration, or, failing in that, to keep it under 
the control of the empire. America was closed; Asia was all 
taken ; his only opportunity was colonization in Africa. He 
ordered German ships of war to visit the African coast, and estab- 
lished consulates at different ports. Treaties were made with 
the natives for the purpose of acquiring colorable titles to large 
tracts of land, the German flag was raised, and the countr}’- de- 
clared to be under German protection. These settlements are 
merel}’’ stations, where two or three families of foreign merchants 
reside, and outstations of natives — middlemen, who carry on the 
trade between the natives of the interior and the foreigners on 
the coast. Germany also claims the hinterland or interior 
country behind the stations, although most of it had been re- 
garded by the English as under their flag. 

At the time of the uprising in Egypt against the rule of England 
and France, in 1882, France declined to act with England, but 
soon bitterly regretted her mistake, and to offset her loss in 
Pigypt she extended her dominion in northwest Africa and on 
the Gold Coast and the upper Niger, although most of these 
regions had been claimed ly' English traders. About the same 
time the Kongo Free State was founded and claimed the whole 
of the Kongo valley. This was opposed b}^ both France and 
Portugal, the one claiming the countiy north of the Kongo, the 
other that to the south. Thus in 1883 and 1884 it seemed that 
all the groat nations of Europe might come into conflict regarding 
their different claims in Africa. For the j^urpose of settling these 
questions and defining the rights of each country, Germany, 
France, Belgium. Portugal, and England held a conference at 
Berlin in 1884, to which the United States was invited, the only 
conference between the great powers, relating to foreign affairs, 
in which it has participated.. At this convention and by subse- 
quent agreements made between 1885 and 1895 the European 
powers fixed the boundaries of their several African possessions. 


AFRICA SINCE 1SS8 


159 


It was determined that free navigation and free trade should be 
established for all nations within the regions watered by the 
Kongo and its affluents — a right subsequently annulled — and 
on the Zambesi to a point five miles above the mouth of the 
Shire, and free trade for transit to regions on the Niger beyond 
British influence. 

Under these agfeements England and France each claim a 
little more than twenty-five per cent of the Continent ; Portugal, 
Germany, and Belgium together claim about twenty-three per 
cent. The other European poAvers, with the Boers of the Trans- 
vaal and the sultan of Turkey, together hold about twelve per 
cent, leaving to the Africans the desert of Sahara and part of the 
Sudan, about fifteen per cent. This gives to the European 
powers, having no right but that of might, all those j^ortions 
of Africa supposed to be habitable or valuable. 

It has been the policy of Great Britain to alloAV her merchants 
to establish commercial relations with the natiA^es by opening 
trading-stations, but not until the trade becomes profitable, and 
priA'ate enterprise and money have established the value of the 
trade, to raise her flag, claim them as British possessions, and 
exercise gOA’ernmental control. The East Indian empire Avas 
the outgroAvth of a trading-station. France and Germany reversed 
this policy, first taking possession of different parts of Africa, 
establishing territorial governments, and aftei’Avard offering in- 
ducements to mercantile companies to establish trading-stations 
and in addition guaranteeing protection from the natiA^es. Eng- 
land as a result of her policy — the flag folloAving the trade — has 
secured the most valuable parts of Africa. 

France holds an immense territory on the Mediterranean, 
Avith Algiers as its capital, the country south of Algiers and Avest 
of Senegarnbia, and on the upper Avaters of the Niger, AA’hile 
England claims the Niger and Benue, the onl}^ navigable rivers 
in Africa. England formerly claimed Damaraland and Nama- 
qualand, on the soutlnvest coast of Africa, l)ut yielded them to 
Germany, reserving a small tract of land near the center of the 
territory, M'alfish Ijay, the only good harl)or on the coast and the 
best means of access to the interior of the German possessions. 

England alloAved Germany to secure a vast region in East 
Africa over Avhich she had claimed dominion, Imt claims for her- 
self a large j)ortion of Houth Africa, the Shire and the upper 
Avaters of the Zaml^esi, tl»e part of Africa best fitted for the occu- 
pation of Europeans. She retained Egypt, alloAAung France to 


160 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


acquire Tunis and the desert of Sahara. She yielded to Italy 
the southwest coast of the Red sea and south on the Indian 
ocean to the river Juba, including Massowah, the most unhealthy 
part of the Red sea, on condition that Italy should occupy 
Kassala and drive out the Mahdists, reserving also for herself the 
best harbors in the Italian territory’ on the Indian ocean. 

The occupation of Africa has cost France 8750,000,000 and Italy 
her reputation as one of the leading powers of Europe ; Germany 
has failed in her colonization scheme, for, as a recent writer says, 
her colonists in Africa number less than 1,000 and cost about 
82,750 a year each, while the only portions of Africa that have 
3 'ielded large returns for investments made, by colonists are the 
regions controlled by England on the Niger and in South Africa. 

THE BRITISH SOUTH AFRICAN COMPANY. 

The government of these va.st tracts and colonies has gener- 
ally been granted to companies chartered bj’’ the governments of 
Europe. One of these companies, the British South African Com- 
pan\qwas founded in 1889 by Mr Cecil Rhodes. The son-in-law 
of the Prince of Wales and other members of the nobility were 
made directors and officers, receiving full-paid founders’ shares. 
Dr Jameson was one of the subordinate officers. The par value 
of the stock, £1, soon rose in the market to £3 or £4, thus 
securing a handsome profit to the companj^’s noble directors. 
The company was authorized “ to acquire by any concession, 
grant, or treaty all or any rights, authorities, jurisdictions, and 
powers of any kind or nature whatever, including powers neces- 
sar}’ for the purposes of government, comprised or referred to in 
the concessions and agreement made as aforesaid or affecting 
other territories, lands, or property in Africa or the inhabitants 
thereof.” Among the privileges given to it are “ the right to es- 
tablish banking and other companies and associations ; to make 
and maintain railroads, telegraphs, and lines of steamships; to 
carry on mining operations and license mining companies ; to 
settle, cultivate, and improve the lands ; to preserve peace and 
order in such ways and manner as it shall consider necessary, 
and for that object maj" establish and maintain a force of police* 
and have its own flag.” 

The territory originally included in the charter of the com- 
pany "was many times larger than Great Britain, but Mr Rhodes 
and his associates, still unsatisfied, penetrated into Khama’s 
country, Matabeleland and Mashonaland, defeated Lobengula, 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


161 


and added a large tract to that already under British protection. 
But still beyond lay richer lands, and in June, 1895, a territory 
called Northern Zambesia and N 3 ^assaland, larger and more val- 
uable than the original grant, was added to the South African 
Company. This was the land discovered by Dr Livingstone, set- 
tled by Scotchmen at his instance, and here on lake Bangweolo 
he died. The whole territoiy is now called -Rhodesia, or Zam- 
besia, and extends from Cape Colony north over two thousand 
miles past lake Nyassa, with lake Tanganyika as its northeastern 
boundary and the Kongo Free State its northwestern. The com- 
pany now claim a territoiy of nearly one million square miles, 
an area larger than Europe exclusive of Russia. 

The country is very thinly populated, and the valleys of the 
LimjDopo and Zambesi are infested by the tsetse, a stinging ily 
unknown elsewhere ; its bite is fatal to the horse and ox ; it 
seems, however, to disappear with the advance of civilization. 
But notwithstanding this pest, Zambesia, with its great elevation, 
its fine climate, its fertile soil (much of it capable of cultivation 
by irrigation), and its great mineral deposits, may become one of 
the most wealth v and densely populated portions of Africa. 

^^dthin the territoiy of the South African Company are the 
richest diamond mines in the world, and just over its border, in 
the Transvaal, the richest gold mines. 

DIAMONDS 

India was formerly the onl}'- countr}un which diamonds were 
found to any great extent. They were afterward discovered in 
Brazil, and some of small size have been found in other jilaces. 
The diamond fields of both India and Brazil appear to be nearly 
exhausted. The first diamond discovered in South Africa was 
found in 1868 near Kimberley, 620 miles north of Cape Town. 
Since 1870, when mines were opened, the production has ra])idly 
increased, and in twent}’’-five years these mines have ]n’odiiced 
more and larger diamonds than all other countries, 98 per cent 
of the present production of the world coming from Kimberley. 

The.se stones are found in a region about twelve miles in cir- 
cumference, where four small hills or pipes, as they arc called, 
rise from 60 to 80 feet above the ground, i)rol)al)l}^ natural chim- 
nej's or extinct craters, lined with walls of basalt, broadening 
out below the surface to a great dei)th. 'I'hese craters are filh'd 
with a blue diamantiferous formation, which has been forced to 
the surface of the ground by the [U’cssure of the subterranean 


162 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


gases. In this formation the diamonds are imbedded, in a reg- 
ular order known to miners. Formerly the earth was thrown 
out from the surface until several hundred feet in depth over a 
large area had been removed. This method of working was dan- 
gerous and expensive, and now shafts are sunk at a little distance 
from the craters and the blue earth is reached by underground 
galleries. The workings are inclosed by high walls, within which 
the workmen are confined during the time of their service. Each 
night they are stripi)ed and their persons and clothing subjected 
to a most careful examination. The secretion of diamonds or 
their purchase from workmen is punished most severely ; but 
with all these precautions diamonds to the value of probably a 
million dollars a ,year are secured by the miners. Instances like 
the following are not uncommon ; A man escaping on horse- 
back was carefully examined and released, no diamonds being 
found upon him, but on crossing the border he stopped, dis- 
moimted, shot his horse, and took from the animal a small bag of 
these precious stones. 

There were originally so many different claims and rival com- 
j)anies that their consolidation seemed almost impossible. It 
was then that Mr Cecil Rhodes first appeared prominently before 
the world. Througli his financial genius and marvelous man- 
agement the companies were consolidated into one corporation, 
with a capital of $20, 000, 000, The net profits in 1895 are said 
to have been over $11,000,000 from the sale of the diamonds; 
$5,000,000, or 25 per cent, was divided and the balance carried 
to a reserve fund. The production is limited to the demand, so 
that the market may not be overstocked and the diamond de- 
crease in value. 

TRANSVAAL, OR SOUTH AFRICAN REPUBLIC 

Not far from the diamond mines are the richest gold mines in 
the world. These are in the Transvaal, a country of from 110,000 
to 120,000 square miles, 240 miles from north to south and 360 
miles from east to west, and with a population of 700,000 to 
750,000. Of these 75,000 are Boers.* 

The ancestors of the Boers were Dutch and French Hugue- 
nots, who had with our own Pilgrim Fathers found in Holland 
a refuge from persecution for more than a generation. The}^ left 
Holland about the same time that the Pilgrims and Dutch 
sailed for America — the one to an inhospitable climate and a 


Boer is the same word as the German Bauer and English boor, a peasant farmer. 


AFRICA SINCE 1S88 


163 


life of hardship, privation, and intense activit 3 ^ the other to a 
genial climate, where toil was unnecessary and where all the 
surroundings were favorable to life and a rapid increase of popu- 
lation. The one has steadily advanced, the other retrograded, a 
difference largely due to environment. 

The southern coast of Africa for nearly eight hundred miles, 
is entirely destitute of navigable rivers ; has neither harbors 
nor islands, has only one or two open roadsteads, and therefore 
offers no inducements to commerce. Nearly parallel with the 
coastline are three chains of mountains running from east to 
west, the first about fifty miles from the ocean and the others 
from fifty to one hundred miles apart, each succeeding range 
rising higher than the one in front of it. On the coast the soil is 
rich and fertile, producing excellent grapes, yielding more wine 
per acre than those of any other country, though of an inferior 
quality. There is an abundant rainfall and the crops are large, 
but the rain clouds passing over the mountains leave the. pla- 
teau between them dry and barren. North of the third range is 
the valley of the Orange, various branches of which, rising to the 
north and south among the mountains, flow across Africa to the 
Atlantic. Its eastern watershed is well watered and can be 
easily irrigated, but until irrigated it is only adapted to grazing. 

The railroad from the cape of Good Hope to Johannesburg 
runs almost through the middle of the country. The land west 
of the railroad is arid, and the Orange river grows shallower as 
it approaches the sea. Only a small portion of the country is 
suitable for agriculture, but a large part offers, wdth but little 
labor, good pasturage for cattle all the year round. The climate 
is delightful, the thermometer rarely rising to 90° Fah. or falling 
below the freezing point. 

This country was formerly inhabited by the Hottentots, among 
the lowest in the .scale of negro races. About the time the Boers 
landed in South Africa, the Bantus, the highest in the scale, were 
pushing their wa}" to the south, along the eastern coast, forcing 
the Hottentots into the interior and thence to the west. After 
the advent of the Boers the increase in j)opulation was very slow, 
the total number of inhabitants being only about twenty thou- 
sand when the English took possession of Cape Colony in ISOO. 
The English emigrants wen; better educated than the Boers, and 
the two races have rarely intermarried. 

After the Crimean war in 2, (MX) t<j 3,0()() Germans, volun- 

teers in that war, were given homesteads in southeastern .Africa 


164 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


by the English; these have in the main been absorbed by the 
Boers. 

Between 1820 and 1830 slavery was abolished by Great Brit- 
ain. The Dutch, who were engaged in trade and agriculture, 
freed their slaves and remained in Cape Colon}', mingling more 
and more with the English ; those engaged in the raising of cat- 
tle, dissatisfied with the compensation offered, moved north- 
ward, though still under British dominion. 

Tlie English and the Boers were engaged in continual conflict 
with the natives, hut the home government was unwilling to 
defend the settlers. The Boers w'ere therefore compelled to 
defend themselves, and thereby gradually became independent, 
roaming with their families and cattle, crushing out or enslav- 
ing the natives, until they reached the Orange river, in the 
country now called the Orange Free State. Between 1835 and 
1838 they settled beyond the river Vaal, in the Transvaal. Here 
scattered over a vast area each family occupies as many acres as 
it desires. There is no means of intercommunication, .save by ox 
wagons, traveling only twelve miles a day. The people are with- 
out near neighbors, and there are very few towns or villages. 
In such a community education is necessarily neglected. Inter- 
mingling with English, Germans, and Kaffirs they speak a 
dialect unlike either the pure Dutch or the Dutch spoken in 
Cape Town. They live in perfect social equality, with a strong 
sense of personal dignity — ])roud, independent, neither rich nor 
poor, but shrewd and self-willed. Mr Glad.stone has described 
them as “ Protestants in religion, Hollanders in origin, vigorous, 
obstinate, and tenacious in character, even as we are.” 

In time of drought they move with their families and cattle 
from place to place for pasturage, returning after the rains to 
their homes. The hunting of game is an absolute necessity, not 
only for the protection of the cattle from wild animals, but for 
food, clothing, and trade. In consequence, the elephant, lion, 
rhinoceros, ostrich, and zebra have been almost entirely driven 
to the north. Mdien they are gone the Boer will probably lose 
his remarkable skill with the rifle. 

When the Boers receive a summons to arms from the president 
they take their provisions, rifles, and ammunition, mount their 
horses, and are off, the best sharpshooters and guerillas in the 
world, as the English have frequently learned to their cost, 
especially in the battle of Majuba hill, where, though strongly 
entrenched, they were defeated with great lo.ss. 



NAT. GEIOG. MAG. 



or 


SHOWING 

PRINCIPAL POLITICAL DIVISIONS 


English Statute Miles 


Geographical Miles 



<lcx*ndrl< 


Sttaki n 


Dongoli 


yiCTi 


\i% NYAi 


) Mombasa 


unztbar 


'GAMYIt 








Tr^oj>j^c_ of _ C^_r i_co r n 


CHUANAL ~H[> 


^Joh«nft«*b4irgj_ _yt>alag^aBay 

r'V I 


Vfybuji . 


t C O L |0 N Y 


>^Pofttinab*j 


John Q.Torb^rt. I 


/ 

4 

rtum 1 

\ 'J^assala 

VX. VI 

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saowah j 

i w 

/ ! 

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\ 

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N 1 

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I. ^MOtO-L'tMO. Wft«HrH«<VrfN 



VOL, VII. 


■1896, PL. XIX 




AFRICA SINCE ISSS 


165 


When the Boers were in Cape Colony, and for some time after- 
ward during their nomad life, they Avere under English rule. 
They rebelled at times, but it was not until 1852 that they threw 
off the English yoke and became a free people. In 1882 Paul 
Kruger was elected president, and by the Convention of London 
in 1884 the Transvaal was recognized as a nation, England merely 
retaining the right to approA'e “ all treaties made Avith any state 
or nation other than the Orange Free State, and Avith any native 
tribes outside the Transvaal.” The Boers agreed^ that “all per- 
sons, Avith their families, should have full liberty to reside in any 
part of the Transvaal and to carrry on any kind of business, 
and such persons Avere to be subject to no higher taxation than 
is or may be imposed upon citizens ; ” also that no slavery was 
to be tolerated. If these privileges are conceded, England has 
no right to interfere in its internal affairs. 

The government of the Transvaal is nominally administered by 
a parliament, but the poAver is in the hands of Paul Kruger, the 
president, the grandson of a German, a stolid Boer of great nat- 
ural abilitA" and shrewdness, Avith strong homely features and blue 
eyes shoAving keen Avatchfulness and great firmness of purpose. 
When parliament is not in session, he has poAver to issue proc- 
lamations, Avhich can be enforced until its next meeting, and 
Avben it is in session he rules the members, it is said, b}’' threat- 
ening to reduce their salaries. 

In 1885 gold Avas discovered on a ridge about six thousand 
feet above sea-level, near the present cit}'’ of Johannesburg. Im- 
migrants immediately flocked in. Today Johannesburg is the 
center of a district, according to an informal but relial)le census, 
of 120,850 Euroj>eans and Americans, all of Avhom are engaged 
in mining. This discovery of gold has been most fortunate for 
the Avorld. As the production of the mines of California fell 
off, the loss has been made up in the Transvaal. After the dis- 
covery of the California mines, the gold production of the Avorld 
gradually increased until 1853, Avhen it reached the maximum 
of §155,000,000 ; tlien it stcadil^Mliminished until 1883, Avhen it 
Avas only §05,W0,000; at this time the African mines began to 
supply the market. Since then production has rapidly increased, 
and it is believed that in 1800 it Avill be over §200,0(_K),0()(), the 
largest amount ever mined, and one-half Avill come from the 
Transvaal. The veins have been carefully surveyed and traced 
for several hundred miles, and it is believed that they are more 
extensive than any other gold fields. In many places the re- 


166 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


mains of ancient surface workings, probably hundreds of years 
old, have been found, supposed by some to be the mines of King 
Solomon. 

Beside the gold mines, the Transvaal is rich in all kinds of 
minerals, especially silver, copper, coal, and iron. The soil also 
is very rich, and with a proper system of irrigation is capable of 
yielding large returns ; but the farms of the Boers are neglected 
and unproductive. The late Lord Kandolph Churchill, who vis- 
ited it in 1892, wrote of it that “ it might be the most wealthy 
and prosperous spot on earth, but Providence has cursed it with 
the rule of fifty thousand- Boers.” 

The foreigners, or Uitlanders, as they are called, desire rep- 
resentation in the government and claim rights and privileges 
to which as foreigners and unnaturalized citizens they are not 
entitled. They assert that taxes in Johannesburg, contrary to 
the convention of 1884, are ten times as high as in Pretoria, 
and that nine-tenths of all the taxes are paid by them ; that 
they have no right to vote or to participate in the administra- 
tion of the general or local governments ; that they are com- 
pelled to sustain schools where all the instruction is in the 
Dutch language. In answer it is said that Pretoria is a town of 
poor farms ; Johannesburg a bustling, growing, thriving mining 
city, with a large, unruly population, where taxes must be high ; 
tliat the foreigners are absorbing the trade and carrying away 
the wealth of the country, and should therefore pay the larger 
part of the taxes; that the laws give the Uitlanders the right to 
vote after naturalization and to become members of the lower, 
though not of the higher, house ; that the sehools were established 
b}’’ the Boers for their own children, not for the English, and 
that naturally no provision has been made for instruction in a 
foreign language; that the Uitlanders came into the Transvaal a 
short time ago without invitation from the Boers, without any 
fixed determination to remain, solely for their own profit, and 
have therefore no right to complain of laws to which they have 
voluntarily submitted. 

The Uitlanders looked to Mr Cecil Rhodes and his company for 
help and gladly promised to join any force that might be sent 
to their relief. In response to tins appeal Dr Jameson collected 
the police force of the chartered company, crossed the boundary 
into the Transvaal in the last days of 1895 to restore the Trans- 
vaal to English rule ; but he had underestimated the strategical 
skill, the strength, and ability of tbe Boers. General Joubert, 


A FRICA SINCE 18S8 


167 


the commander, showed on this, as on prior occasions, great mili- 
tar}' ability, and by his quick movements put down the incipient 
rebellion at Johannesburg, and defeated and captured the En- 
glish forces. All South Africa would have rejoiced in the suc- 
cess of Dr Jameson, and England would have accepted the 
situation. Germany might have objected, though we cannot see 
what right she would have had, for the Transvaal is hundreds of 
miles from her possessions, and the new doctrine of “ Sphere of 
Influence ” could not have applied. 

The Boers have shown great forbearance, wisdom, and good 
judgment in this emergency. In time of peace armed men in- 
vaded their country to overthrow the government. They could 
justly have been hanged, but, at the request of the British govern- 
ment, the president surrendered Dr Jameson and his men for 
trial according to the laws of Great Britain. We doubt if it 
would be eas}’’ to find in all history an instance of like forbear- 
ance and mercy. It should, however, be remembered that the 
fathers of the present Boers .either drove the natives from the 
Transvaal or reduced them to slavery, the higher civilization 
driving out the lower. 

This country, with its delightful climate, fertile soil, forests of 
valuable timber, mines of precious metals, and large deposits of 
coal, will continue to draw large numbers of emigrants from 
England. Further disturbance is therefore sure to arise unless 
the Boers give the Uitlanders the civil rights they claim, and these 
once secured, it is inevitable that the British flag will float over 
the Transvaal. 

Other gold veins are worked in various places on the territory 
of the chartered company. Buluwayo, in November, 1893, the 
chief kraal of Lobengula, has now a population of 4,000, and 
is the center of one of the gold fields. None of these fields has 
thus far proved j)rofitable, but there is every reason to believe 
that gold will be found in great abundance. 

There are political movements which politicians do not initiate ; 
revolutions accomplished without statesmen or captains. In 
these we look in vain for a master-mind, acting either alone or 
with others. Not the least significant are the changes efl’ectod 
by the discovery of gold. The middle of the century witnessed 
a wonderful flevelopment in the United States and Australia; 
its close promises to witness an even greater revolution in South 
Africa. 


168 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


ABYSSINIA 

We will now turn from the Transvaal to Ab 5 ’'ssinia and the 
Italian jiossessions on the Red sea, where Italy is engaged in 
what may prove to be a life-and-death struggle. 

Abyssinia, or Ethiopia, as it was formerly called, is the most 
elevated plateau of Africa. The coast of the Red sea is here low, 
dry, and utterly devoid of vegetation, consisting of great sand 
wastes, only relieved by alkali plains,, salt marshes and salt lakes, 
hot, and most unhealth 3 ^ A traveler, writing of this region, sa}'’s ; 
“ The country is a parched, desolate region ; the climate an inten- 
sified, perpetual, torrid heat; the rainfall one or more terrific 
thunder-storms in the year; the occupation of the inhabitants 
tending scanty and wretched flocks and herds, watching the ap- 
})roach of enemies ; their fears always alive for sudden death > 
their hopes for peace.’’ 

The ground rises abruptly to the height of nine or ten thou- 
sand feet, forming a steep mountain chain about six hundred 
miles long, at first parallel to the Red sea, but near Massowah 
the coast trends to the southeast, while the range continuas its 
southerly course. Some of these mountains rise to the height 
of sixteen thousand feet. Far away on the west the countiy 
falls gradually to the Nile valley, and on the southwest to the 
great lakes. The only access to this plateau from the Red sea 
is up great gorges or canyons 1,000 to 3,000 feet in depth, each 
canyon vaiying in width from two or three feet to one hun- 
dred feet, with sudden turns shutting off the view beyond. 
Down these canjmns in the wet season the water rushes with 
great violence, bringing masses of stone and rock ; but the 
greater part of the year they are diy, and the traveler must often 
go from twenty to thirty miles without finding water. This 
plateau when reached is not a level plain, but is broken and 
tossed up b^’’ volcanic action, the mountains assuming wild fan- 
tastic forms, with abrupt, precipitous valleys, only accessible 
through deep passes. The plateaus, between six thousand and 
eight thousand feet above sea-level, are the temperate region, 
never either veiy hot or very cold. Some of the canyons are so 
deep that one can stand on the edge and, looking down, see at 
one glance the vegetation of the frigid, temperate, and torrid 
zones. The rivers flowing through these canyons act as barriers 
to communication, instead of facilitating it. In this region the 
Blue Nile rises and flow's through deep can}mns, falling about 


AFRICA SINCE 1SS8 


169 


4,000 feet in less than three hundred miles and cutting Abyssinia 
into Northern and Southern Ethiopia. The volume of this river 
is increased from 6,000 cubic feet per second in the dry season 
to 220,000 in the rain}'- season, and it carries down the earth from 
these high lands to Egypt, which owes its prodigious fertility 
to the Blue Nile. 

From its elevation Abyssinia is healthy, and the climate is said 
to be as salubrious as any on the globe. Th& valleys on the 
western slope are fertile, producing abundant fruits and the vege- 
tation of the temperate and tropical zones. Its lofty ranges are 
the home of Abyssinians, Copts, Arabs, and Jews of the Cauca- 
sian race — partially civilized tribes, once converted to Christi- 
anity, and still calling themselves Christians. The people are 
strong and active, but rude and barbarous. The different tribes 
are generally at war with each other, but at present they are all 
united under one ruler, who claims descent from the Queen of 
Sheba. 

During the ages many attempts have been made to conquer 
the Abyssinians, but this has always been most difficult, as they 
can only be reached either from Egypt up the valley of the Nile 
or from the Red sea through one of the canyons. The latter has 
been the route most usually attempted, with results generally 
disastrous to the invader. The Ab}''ssinians, hidden in the clefts 
of the mountains, behind the rocks and bushes, wait until the 
enemy has reached a difficult part of the canyon before attack- 
ing him. The most notable exception was in 1868, when the 
British, under Sir R. Napier, marched through one of these 
canjmns, captured Magdala, and took prisoner King Theodore ; 
but at that time Theodore had by his atrocities alienated the 
other chiefs and tribes, and through their aid the British passed 
up the canyon without opposition. It was in one of these can- 
yons that the Abyssinians, under Menelek, the Negus Negus or 
King of Kings, as their emperor is called, lying in ambush, 
recently surprised and completely routed the Italians. It is said 
that the Aby.ssinian army of one hundred thousand men was 
sui>])lied with the best i*e})eating rifles ]>y the French and Rus- 
sians, and was aided by French officers. 

The Russians have recently sent an embassy to Abyssinia 
and received an ambassador from that country, and negotia- 
tions are in progress to bring the Abyssinians into the Greek 
church. 

About twenty years ago the Egyptians occupied the whole of 


170 


AFRICA SINCE 18S8 


tlie upper Nile, even to the Gi*eat Lakes and the valley of the 
Red sea. Ab}’ssinia lay between these possessions, and the 
Khedive desired to conquer it. He sent two large armies, which 
marched up the eastern branches of the Nile to Abyssinia ; both 
armies were defeated. The son of the Khedive, in command of 
the second army, was captured with a large number of men, 
but was subsequently ransomed. 

A Mohammedan, born in Dongola, calling'himself El Mahdi — 
i. e., the leader, prophet, or guide — appeared in the Sudan about 
1880, and raised the flag of the Prophet on a small island in the 
Nile near Khartum. Soon Arabs from the desert joined him, and 
later the Bedouins flocked from all parts of Egypt. About the 
same time Arabi Pasha, then an officer in the Egyptian army, 
cons{)ired with El Mahdi and seized Cairo, the Khedive and 
English retiring to Alexandria. Sir Garnet Wolseley was sent 
to command the English and Indian armies, and at the battle 
of Tel-el-Kebir, September, 1882, Arabi was defeated and taken 
]>risoner. He was subsequently sent to Ceylon, but the disaffec- 
tion in the upper Nile continued to extend, and soon the whole 
population of the Sudan and upper Nile was gathered under 
the banner of the prophet El Mahdi. He defeated four expedi- 
tions, and in 1883 General Hicks Pasha, with an Anglo-Egyptian 
army of 10,000, was sent against him. They marched into the 
desert, and for months nothing was heard of the expedition, then 
slowly the news of its annihilation reached Cairo. In June El 
Mahdi ca]>tured Khartum, killing General Gordon a few days ' 
])efore General Wolseley with the English army came in sight of 
the city — too late. They returned without even attempting to 
avenge his death. 

El Mahdi died a few months later, but his army was not dis- 
])ersed. Osman Digna, the general of the Mahdists, overran the 
region east of the Nile, ca])turing and massacring Egyptian 
garrisons at different places and marching to the very gates of 
Suakin on the Red Sea, where the Mahdists desired to have a sea- 
port for communication with Arabia, in order to obtain a good 
market for slaves from the interior of Africa. With these 
INIahdists the Italians have now to contend. Soon after their 
occupation of Massowah they acquired control of Tigre and 
Kassala, then held by the Mahdists and Dervishes. These 
fanatics, encouraged by the defeat of the Italians, are now said 
to be preparing to attack Kassala. 

The English, for the purjjose of aiding the Italians and re- 


AFRICA SINCE ISSS 


171 


covering the valley of the upper Nile, wrested from Egypt by 
the Mahdists ten years ago, have sent a body of English troops, 
with an army of Sudanese and Egyptians, under English 
officers, from Cairo up the Nile to Dongola, between the fourth 
and fifth cataracts, in the expectation that the Mahdists and 
Dervishes will be drawn from Kassala to attack the English. If 
the latter are successful they will probably march up the valley 
to Khartum. If they are unsuccessful it is feared that the 
Mahdists will march down the valley to Cairo. 

To an American it seems difficult to understand the reason 
that led Italy to attempt the acquisition of such a territory in 
Africa, and why Signor Crispi, under whose ministry it was 
undertaken, should assert that “ colonial extension is a vital 
question — the advantage which it brings not being translatable 
into figures.” 

Unfortunately for Signor Crispi it has been translated into 
figures which show a large and serious deficit in Italian finances. 

THE PHYSICAL FEATURES OF AFRICA AS THEY AFFECT ITS ECO- 
NOMIC VALUE, FUTURE OCCUPATION, AND CIVILIZATION. 

The growth and prosperity of a country depend on its forma- 
tion, including its mountains, temperature, and rainfall, its 
mineral and vegetable productions, and its facilities for inter- 
communication. 

Africa is unlike the other continents, especially in the uniform- 
ity of its topography and in its temperature. It is a great penin- 
sula, without islands, indentations, or harbors on its coast. This 
difference is especially exemplified by the Mediterranean coasts 
of Africa and Europe. The former is a long continued sand 
beach, without a break and with only one or two good liarbors, 
while on the European side are the great j)eninsulas of Sj)ain, 
Italy, and Greece, everywhere indented with island-studded 
seas and with bays and harbors. 

Africa has a coastline of only 15,000 miles. If it was as long 
as that of Euroi)e, in proportion to the size of the continent, it 
would be 57,000 miles long. 

The relief of the land, instead of being centered in long and 
lofty mountain ranges, lias been spread over the (continent with 
wonderful efiuality, forming high jilateaus, witli terraces to the 
ocean, down which the water ruslies in rajiids or over high falls, 
which render the great rivers impo.ssible of navigation. Notwith- 


172 


AFRICA SINCE 1888 


standing this lack of long mountain ranges, its average altitude — 
about 2,000 feet — is higher than that of the other continents. 

The country" north of the equator presents a great similarity to 
the country south of it, though the features on the north are on 
a much larger scale. North of the equator is the greater lake 
Chad, south of it the smaller lake Ngami ; north of lake Chad 
is the great desert of Sahara ; south of lake Ngami is the small 
desert of Kalahari. North of Sahara, on the Mediterranean, and 
south of Kalahari, on the Indian ocean, are fertile tracts of 
limited extent, where the rainfall is abundant and vegetation 
flourishes. 

The greater part of the territory between the Mediterranean 
and Sudan and between the Atlantic and the Red sea, and a 
considerable portion south of the Zambesi, comprising nearly 
one-half of Africa, is practically Sahara — that is, a waste or desert. 

The Sahara is a plateau of diversified structure, with hills and 
numerous dried-up water-courses ; regions of dunes or steppes, 
overgrown with alfa, alternating with sandy waste. At sunset 
the temperature falls quickly, causing a difference of one hun- 
dred degrees between day and night. Scattered through the 
desert are about four hundred oa.ses, where the date palm flour- 
ishes. In many places wells have been dug, and great caravans 
follow the line of these oases and wells. The desert of Kalahari, 
in South Africa, is much smaller, has a more temi^erate climate, 
resembles our arid lands, and, like the latter region, is to a large 
extent suitable for the pasturing of cattle. 

Although Africa is about five thousand miles long and four 
thousand five hundred miles wide in the broadest part, stretch- 
ing over seventy degrees of latitude, about two-thirds of its area 
lies within the tropics, with a vertical sun twice a year, giving it 
the hottest climate in the world. The average temperature is 
eighty degrees, while north and south of the tropics the average 
temperature is only ten degrees less. In the tropics the climate 
is so enervating and unhealthy for Europeans that they cannot 
live there more than two or three years, while the same climate 
is most favorable to the negro. 

The Germans occupied the Kamerun, in western Africa, near 
the equator, supposing that a great mountain rising fourteen 
thousand feet directly from the ocean would prove an excellent 
health resort; but the miasmatic vapors ascend the mountain 
slopes and render it an unfit habitation for the European. The 
rainfall in equatorial Africa is most abundant, from sevent\" to 


AFRICA SINCE 1S88 


1 1 3 

one hundred inclies a }’ear, causing a hot, moist atmosphere and 
a luxuriant vegetation. In this region the population is densest, 
from the abundance of fruits and the ease with which life is sup- 
ported. There is also a heavy rainfall in the mountains of Abys- 
sinia, on the northwest coast of the ^Mediterranean and on the 
southern and southeastern coasts, the rainfall diminishing toward 
the central and western ^^arts of South Africa. As the rainfall 
diminishes, the native jDopulation decreases. All the other con- 
tinents have great rivers, forming waterways to and from the 
interior. Africa has but one such river — the Niger. The Nile 
and Kongo are, however, among the most remarkable rivers in 
the world ; the Nile, for its history and inundations; the Kongo, 
for the great number of its branches, navigable for small vessels 
for several thousand miles. On this river and its branches there 
are from forty to fifty stern-wheel steamers and about 100 sta- 
tions, Avith from 600 to SOO white men in charge. 

The Avhole trade of Africa, excepting that of Cape Colony and 
the Mediterranean, is monopolized by great companies, and 
where these do not exist, by smaller traders. This trade is most 
profitable to Europeans, consisting largely in the exchange of 
cheap cotton goods, beads, copper wire, in limited quantities, 
and of rum, brandy, old arms, and ammunition, in large quanti- 
ties, for ivory, india-ruV>ber, and other products. 

The total amount of the annual exports and imports of Africa 
other than from the Mediterranean and exclusive of gold, silver, 
and diamonds is, however, scarcely equal to the annual foreign 
trade of one of the large ports of the United States. 

From this rCsume it appears that Africa produces abundantly 
in the equatorial provinces, where the white man cannot live; 
that there are not any good waterways from the interior to the 
coast and fcAv good harbors when it is reached ; that the only 
articles obtained from the natives are elei)hants’ tusks and the 
fruits that grow spontaneously; that the only way of moving 
products to and from the sea is by caravans, a slow and ex- 
pensive method, precluding any extensive commerce. From this 
it follows that the value of eipiatorial Africa is and must be for 
a long time very small It is possible to build railroads into 
the interior of efpiatorial .Vfrica, for one or two are now in opera- 
tion in Portuguese West Africa, one is in j)rocess of construction 
around the falls of the Kongo, and surveA's are being made in 
eastern Africa, both by Englaml and by (lermany, and in north- 
Avestern Africa by France; but it is doubtful if there is now suf- 


12 


174 


AFEICA SIXCE 1SS8 


ficient business to enable these roads to pay operating expenses, 
nor can the trade be materially increased until the natives ac- 
(piire the habits and wants of civilized life and are willing to 
labor and raise the products that will grow in the tropics and 
exchange them for the goods and wares of Europe and America. 
This change is slowly taking jdace. The mercantile agencies 
must and do employ native traders and native labor. All the 
work in the tropics is performed by Africans ; men whose fathers 
never saw or heard of white men are building railroads and tele- 
graphs and carrying great loads from the interior to the coast ; 
some are in suj)erior positions, in charge of stores and telegraph- 
offices or steamboats ; some receive regular wages ; others are 
paid in clothing or spirits. 

The European can })robably live in the high plateaus of Abys- 
sinia, in the Lake region, and in southern Africa, where, from 
the elevation, he would have a Euro])ean or temperate climate. 
Southeastern and central South Africa have a temperate climate, 
are generally well watered, and the land is capable of cultiva- 
tion b}’ irrigation. In this region the mineral wealth is large, 
and it is connected with the Indian ocean and South Atlantic by 
railroads now in operation. There seems to be no physical cause 
to ]irevent these regions from becoming the homes of numbers 
of Euro{)eans beside the present occupants. 

In America the Indians or natives have invariably given ]dace 
to the white man and have been generally exterminated. Will 
tlie negroes or natives of Africa retire before the European ? Let 
us consider South Africa tlie ])ortion of the continent most favor- 
able to tbe white man. The slave trade and the constant wars 
between the natives have been stopped ; the Kaffirs have ex- 
clianged the brutal rule of the savage for the beneficent govern- 
ment of the Euro]>ean, and have l)ecome freemen, endowed with 
an absolute title to their homes and to any ipro}ierty they may 
acquire. They cultivate the fields of the Boer ; they work in 
the diamond and gold mines; the}’ own large herds of cattle, 
and, compelled to give up their nomad life, the}’ have com- 
menced tilling the ground for themselves. 

Instead of white day laborers, as in Europe and America, the 
English in South Africa employ the Kaffir. As a result the native 
population is increasing with accelerated rapidity. It is already 
many times more numerous than the European and the disparity 
is constantly and rapidly increasing. The Kaffir lives more 
cheaply and works for less wages than the white man. The only 


GEOGRAPHIC RELATION OF THE THREE AMERICAS 175 


Europeans required, or for whom there is room or occupation, 
are the OAvner and the OA’erseer, the mechanic and tlie engineer. 
In another generation the Kaffir Avill fill most of these places, 
and there Avill l)e no Avork or ])Osition in the interior for the 
Englishman. The capitalist, the manufacturer, the merchant, 
and the trader will liA’e in the cities. 

First the Hottentots AAxre expelled by the Bantus ; then the 
Bantus AA'ere drh'en into the interior by the Boers ; the Boer in 
his turn giA^es AA'ay to the Englishman onl}" to be ejected by the 
Kaffir AA'hen he has learned to AAmrk. 

What is true of the Kaffir holds good to a less extent of the 
Bantus and negro tribes in Equatorial Africa. The Arab slaA'e 
dealer has been shorn of his poAA^er ; the slaA^e trade has been 
generally stopped, and with that the prime cause of the interne- 
cine wars. WhereA’er the European rule is established and peace 
assured, improA'ement soon appears in the habits and character 
of the people, AAuth a A’ery rapid increase of the population. 

The Arab, Bantu, and negro must occupy the equatorial re- 
gions of Africa, because the white man cannot liA^e there, and they 
will then, I belieA-e, driA’e out the Europeans from the remainder 
of the continent and we shall see a race A’astly superior to any 
Africans now there and in some respects suiierior to the white 
man. 


FUNDAMENTAL GEOGRAPHIC RELATION OF THE 
THREE AMERICAS 

By Robert T. Hill, 

United Stntea Geological Snrveg 

The earl\' geographers taught that the two American conti- 
nents are i»ractically dominated l)y a continuous cordilleran 
system, running like a liackbone through South America, Central 
America, and North America, connecting the Avhole AA'estern 
l)order of the hemisphere into one great mountain system. 
Modern exi)loration shoAVs that this teaching must be modified. 

The Andean cordilleran belt dominating the AA’estern coast 
of South America trifurcates after crossing the equator, l)euds 
slightly eastAvard, and abruptly terminates in northern Colom- 
l>ia. Oidy one doubtful s[»ur of the Andes touches the coast of 
the .Vmerican .Mediterranean, and this is the Sierra del Marta, 


176 GEOGRAPHIC RELATION OF THE THREE AMERICAS 


lying between the gulf of Maracaibo and Rio ^lagdalena. This 
northern end of the Andes lies entirely west of the Isthmian 
region and is separated from it by Rio Atrato. Minute study 
shows that the Andean system has no genetic connection with 
the mountains of the northern coast of South America, much 
less with the mountains of Central America or the great Rocky 
Mountain region of Mexico and the United States; in fact, the 
deeply eroded valley of this stream nearly severs the Isthmian 
region and the Pacific coast of the Republic of Colombia from 
the South American continent. 

The studies of many geographers, especially those recently 
conducted by Felix and Lenk, have shown that the main cor- 
dilleran system of Mexico, which is the southern continuation 
of the R(^cky Mountain region of the United States, abruptly 
terminates with the great scarp or “abfall” of the so-called 
plateau a little south of the capital of the Republic, and that 
these mountains have no orographic features in common with 
those of the Central American region lying further southward. 
The axes of the two great North American and South American 
cordilleras, the Rocky mountains and the Andean sy.stem, if 
projected from their termini in Colombia and southern Mexico, 
respectively, would not connect through Central America, but 
would pa.ss each other in parallel lines many hundred miles 
apart. The projected Andes would pass through Jamaica and 
ea.stern Cuba and continue east of the longitude of the whole 
Appalachian system in the direction of Nova Scotia ; the south- 
ward continuation of the North American cordilleras would cross 
the equator in the Pacific, far west of Central America and the 
South American continent. 

Between the widely separated termini of the main North 
American and South American cordilleras as above defined, and 
extending directly across their trend at right angles to them, lies 
another great orogenic system of folds, to which the term An- 
tillean has been applied. Collectively they constitute a great 
orogenic system which has been of the utmost importance in 
giving to the Caribbean region its predominant outline.s — a 
system composed of corrugations having an east-west trend, 
which has never been appreciated by the geologist or geog- 
rapher owing to the overwhelming proportions of the adjacent 
mountains built up by volcanic ejecta. They extend along the 
Venezuelan and Colombian coast of South America, north of the 
Orinoco, the isthmus of Panama, Costa Rica, and the eastern 


GEOGRArmC RELATION OF THE THREE AMERICAS 177 



SURROUNDING LANDS. 


178 GEOGRAPHIC RELATION OF THE THREE AMERICAS 


parts of Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras, Yucatan, Chiapas, 
and southern Oaxaca, and through the Great Antilles. These 
mountains are made up of granites, eruptives, and folded sedi- 
mentary rocks of Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic age in 
Guatemala and southern Mexico ; of Mesozoic and Cenozoic 
age in the Antilles, Costa Rica, Venezuela, and Colombia; and 
of Cenozoic age in Panama. 

The two elongated submarine ridges Ghe so-called Mistero.sa 
and Rosalind banks) stretching across the Caribbean from the 
Antilles to the Central American coast, between the Sierra Mae-- 
tro of Cuba and the gulf of Honduras, and from Jamaica to cape 
Gracios a Dios respectively, separated by the sulimarine valley, 
18,000 feet in depth, known as “ Bartlett Deep,” have a suggestive 
and remarkable resemblance to these east-west corrugations of 
the land ; indeed Seebach long since suggested that these ridges 
directly connected the mountains of the Antilles with those of 
Guatemala and Honduras. 

Thus the Caribbean sea is almost entirely surrounded by the 
east-west trending mountains and submarine ridges of the Antil- 
lean type; the Windward islands, marking the eastern inlet of 
the sea, are largely volcanic necks. 

A distinct class of mountains, independent of great lines of 
folding of the earth-crust, are the volcanoes. These have grown 
by e.xtrusion and accumulation; .sometimes they are parasitic 
on the folded mother-sy.stems, sometimes independent of them. 
They belong to the great area of igneous activity which, since at 
least as earl\' as the beginning of Tertiary time, has marked the 
whole we.stern half of the North American continent, the Carib- 
bean, and the northern and we.stern sides of the Andean region. 
Although they blend, the volcanic ejecta of this great belt may be 
classified for convenience in two distinct age categories, which 
may he called the quiescent and the active volcanic groups. 

The active volcanic groups occur in four widely separated 
regions; 1. The Andean group of volcanoes of the equatorial 
region of western South America, rising above the corrugated 
folds of the northern termination of the predominant South 
American cordilleras. 2. The chain of some twenty-five great 
cinder cones which stretch east and west across the southern 
end of the Mexican plateau, protruding parasite-like upon the 
terminus of the North American cordilleras. 3. The Central 
American group, with its thirty-one active craters, growing diago- 
nally across the western ends of the east-west folds of the Antil- 


GEOGRAPHIC RELATION OF THE THREE AMERICAS 179 


lean corrugations, which fringes the Pacific side of Guatemala, 
San Salvador, and Costa Rica ; this is separated from the Mexi- 
can group on the north by a large non-volcanic area (the isthmus 
of Tehuantepec), and from the Andean volcanoes on the south 
by an area (the isthmus of Panama) in which no living volcanoes 
are found. 4. The chain of volcanoes of the Windward islands, 
marking the eastern gate of the Caribbean sea and standing in a 
line directly across the eastern termini of the Antillean mountains 
of east-west trend, parallel to theCentral American group similarly 
situated at the western termini of these mountains. In recent 
times all these giants of fire have built up vast piles of lava 
and cinder into lofty summits, which overwhelm in topographic 
grandeur the lesser but more significant orographic features of 
the region. 

The quiescent volcanic regions, where activity was dominant 
chiefly in Tertiary time, but ceased long ago, are many. The 
isthmus of Panama, the Pacific coast of South America west of 
the Atrato, the northern coast of South America, and the old 
volcanic regions of northern Mexico and the United States are 
among these. There can be little doubt that the tremendous 
outbursts of igneous material in Tertiary time, which domi- 
nated western Xorth America, extended in a great belt around 
the southern end of the North American cordilleras, crossing 
the Caribbean area to the Atlantic between the two continents. 

The North American cordilleran region lying north of the 
isthmus of Tehuantepec is one of north-south folded sediment- 
aries, plus accumulations of volcanic intrusions and ejecta (chiefiy 
Tertiary), and dominates a continental area. 

The Andean region of the South American continent is one of 
north-south folded sedimentaries, plus accumulations of Tertiary 
volcanic intrusions and ejecta, and dominates a continental area. 

The Caril)l)ean region, including Central America, the Antilles 
and the Windward islands, and most of the Venezuelan and 
Colombian coast of South America, is one of east-west folded 
sedimentaries, plus accumulations of volcanic intrusions and 
ejecta, but, instead of dominating a continental region, pradicalhj 
constitutes a mouittniaous perimeter surroniulluff the depressed basin 
of the Oirlhhean. These mountains were mostly made about the 
close of Tertiary time, and hence are newer than the chief con- 
tinental systems. 

Upon this arrangement of the three systems of mountain folds 
are chiefly dei^endent the great physical ditlenaices l)ctween 


180 GEOGRAPHIC RELATION OF THE THREE AMERICAS 


the lands bordering the gulf of Mexico and Caribbean sea ; the 
former in its geognostic aspects and relations is North American, 
while the latter is distinctly Central American. 

Tlie gulf of Mexico, with the single exception of its extreme 
southwestern indentation of the coast of Mexico, is surrounded 
l)v gently tilted plains, composed of great sheets of sul)horizontal 
sediment, largely dej)osited by its own waters when the}' occu- 
})ied a larger area tlian at present. 

The Central American region as above outlined — i. e., that 
l)ortion of tlie American hemisphere extending from the south- 
ern termination of the Rocky Mountain region to the northern 
termination of the South American Andes, including the south- 
ern border of Mexico, the Republics of Central America, and the 
isthmus of Panama proper — constitutes the western perimeter 
of the circle of mountains inclosing the Caribbean. As a whole 
it is called by some writers the American Isthmian region,* and 
can be genetically separated into two conspicuous regions : 
1. The recent volcanic plateau lying nearer the Pacific coast 
from its commencement in Guatemala to its eastern termination 
in Costa Rica, which is composed of accumulated material ex- 
truded across the western termini of the Antillean trends. 2. The 
lower but nevertheless mountainous iiortions of the Caribbean 
side, composed of folded mountain-axes extending east-west in 
conformable direction with the Antillean uplifts, accompanied 
by old eruptive extrusions of past geologic time. The most 
cons])icuous eminences are the grand volcanic peaks of Guate- 
mala, San Salvador, and Costa Rica. These rise to an average 
height of 10,000 feet, in irregular masses standing nearer the 
Pacific coast than the Atlantic until reaching the borders of 
C’osta Rica, Avhen they sweep diagonally toward the Caribbean 
side, again assuming in the southern j)ortion of that republic a 
central continental position. These great eminences are built 
up of accumulations of volcanic debris, which have buried and 
largely concealed a most interesting antecedent geologic structure 
that must be interpreted before the complete history of the re- 
gion can be written. These mountains, being largely extrusions 
of volcanic material instead of regular folds or })lications of 
stratified rock, ])roduce irregularities of surface which defy the 
ordinary modes of classification. 

* The conspicuous features of this greater Isthmian (Central American) region are 
its narrow, elongated outlines relative to the bro.idening areas of the adjacent conti- 
nent and the completely mountainous character of its entire area, which is void of 
coastal plains. 


THE KANSAS RIVER 


181 


The western termini of the east-west Antillean axes of the 
Caribbean half of Central America, which are buried in western 
Guatemala, Honduras, and Costa Rica by the overlying volcanic 
masses, are not so limited on the Pacific side, but continue across 
Panama. On entering this state from Costa Rica signs of recent 
volcanic activity cease, and the continuity of the chain of high 
Central American summits is succeeded by the still more broken 
and apparently inexplicable lower-lying Isthmian topography. 

The isthmus of Panama can now be accurately defined as the 
stretch of land l 3 ung east of the southern end of the Central 
American region of active volcanoes (commonly called the Costa 
Rican volcanic plateau) and extending to the northern termi- 
nation of the Andes. Its limit on the east is Rio Atrato, which 
flows northward from the equator along the valley marking the 
eastern flank of the Andes ; on the west it is limited b}' the 
southern boundary of the republic of Costa Rica, extending 
from Burica Point to the island of Veraguas and thence between 
the meridians of 79° 15' and 82° for a distance of 180 miles. 
The axial trend of the Isthmian region is east and west, or in a 
direction contrary to the north and south continental trends, 
and is conformable with the Antillean axes. 

The Great Antilles lie along the line of east-west corrugations 
and a]:>parently represent nodes of greater elevation whereby the 
surfaces of these islands were projected above the waters as 
islands, which have persisted without continental connection or 
union with each other since their origin. 

[XoTE.— The foregoing article is published by permission of Professor Agassiz, under 
whose auspices the writer conducted his investigations in the region described.] 


THE KANSAS RIVER 

By Arthur P. Davis 
United Slnles Geoloijiad Survey 

The Kansas river jtroper is formed bv the junction of the 
Smok}' Hill and Rcpultlican forks, at Fort Rile}', in Davis county, 
Kansas, about 140 miles from where it enijttics into the Mis- 
souri. It is OIK! of the liest exani])les of ;i western stream whose 
drainage lies entirely in a jdains region, with no mountain tribu- 
taries. Its basin extends from eastern C’olorado to the Missouri 


182 


THE KAXSAS RIVER 


river, a distance of 485 miles, with an extreme width of nearly 
200 miles. The total area drained, as measured from the latest 
drainage maps of the General Land Office, is 61,440 square miles, 
of which 34,526 are in Kansas, 17,454 in Nebraska, and 9,459 in 
Colorado. 

The altitude of the basin varies from 750 feet at Kansas City 
to over 5,000 feet in Colorado, the average being about 2,500 feet. 
The area is distributed with reference to elevation as follows; 

Under 1,000 feet 1,250 square miles. 

Between 1,000 and 2,000 feet 20,200 “ “ 

“ 2,000 and 3,000 feet 11,300 “ 

“ .3,000 and 4,000 feet 12,560 “ 

“ 1,000 and 5,000 feet .5,020 “ 

Over 5,000 feet 1,510 “ 

Gauge readings have been carried on for several years at the 
mill dam at Lawrence by the mill owner. Sufficient measure- 
ments have not yet been made to establish a mean annual flow. 
Tlie minimum discharge is )>rohably a little over 500 second-feet. 
The mean annual rainfall of this basin varies with approximate 
regularity from almutten inches at its western extremity to nearly 
forty inches at the Missouri river, averaging perhaps twenty 
inches. It will be seen, therefore, that this basin reverses the 
conditions of the typical western stream wdiich rises in the moun- 
tains, where the precipitation is great, and carries its abundant 
waters into the arid plains, where the smaller tributaries can be 
used one l)y one, as the,y leave the mountains, to irrigate the plain. 

Rising as they do, in the most arid portion of the basin, and 
draining a sand}" country of gentle slope, the streams, except at 
the rainiest times, are almost insignificant in size until they 
reach the region where the precipitation is sufficient for the re- 
quirements of agriculture. They thus attain a considerable vol- 
ume only in the eastern part of the State, where irrigation is not 
imjierative, and where, moreover, nearly all the water is concen- 
trated in one stream so large and with so gentle a slope that its 
diversion for commercial purposes is impracticable. If tbe rain- 
tall conditions of the Kansas basin could be reversed, with a forty- 
iuch preci]ntation in eastern Colorado, decreasing to one of ten 
inches at the Missouri, its irrigation possibilities would be in- 
creased many fold. 

Three principal rivers flow directly into the Kansas ; the Blue, 
from the north ; the Republican, from the north\vest, and the 
Smoky Hill, from the west. The Blue has a drainage of 9,490 


THE KANSAS RIVER 


183 


square miles, of which 2,450 are in Kansas and 7,040 in Ne- 
braska. In volume of water the Blue river is by far the most 
important of the tributaries of the Kansas. The discharge of 
this river is being measured by the Geological Survey at Rocky- 
ford, about five miles above its mouth, and the minimum has 
been found to be about 300 cubic feet per second. 

The next stream in order, and also in amount of water deliv- 
ered, is the Republican, draining an area of 25,837 square miles, 
and showing a minimum flow, as observed at Junction City, of 
about 200 cubic feet per second. It will be noticed that though 
draining over two and one-half times as large an area as the Blue, 
its discharge at low water is only two-thirds as great as that of 
the latter stream. This is due to the fact that the Blue drains 
the northern and eastern parts of the basin, where the rainfall is 
heaviest, Avhile the Republican rises at the western extremit}' of 
the drainage area and flows for hundreds of miles through arid 
sand hills that yield very little run-off, except in times of ex- 
cessive rainfall. No part of its basin receives a precipitation 
equal to the average of the basin of the Blue; so, although the 
basins adjoin each other and the rivers empty within twenty 
miles of each other, the ratio of run-off to area is over four times 
as great for the Blue as for the Republican. 

The Smoky Hill river rises in eastern Colorado and drains an 
area of 20,428 square miles. It has two considerable tributaries, 
the Saline and the Solomon, draining respectively 3,311 and 
6,882 .square miles. Gauging stations have been estal)lished on 
all three of tliese streams. The station at Ellsworth, on tlie 
Smoky Hill, intercepts the drainage of 7,980 square miles, of 
which 6.447 are in Kansas and 1,533 in Colorado. A minimum 
discharge of only 10 cubic feet per second sometimes occurs at 
this i)oint. At the gauge on the Saline river at Beverly the area 
drained is 2,730 square miles, and a low-water discharge of 20 
second-feet is shown. The gauge on the Solomon is at Beloit. 
4'he area draining ])ast this ))oint is 5,539 sfpiare miles, and the 
low-water flow is 140 cubic feet jier second. 

There are many water-power develo))inents in the Kansas 
basin, the most numerous and important occurring on the Solo- 
mon and Blue rivers. These develo])ments are, however, in their 
infancy, only a small ])roportlon of the favorable sites being im- 
jiroved. The fidlowing summary of the i)ower in use in this 
basin, taken from the reports on the Whiter Power of the United 
States, published by the 4’enth Census, vol. xvii. page 361, ex- 


184 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


hibits the importance of this river and its tributaries to the local 
industries rapidly being developed upon the Great Plains: 


Stream. 

Tributary to what. 

State. 

Number of mills. 

Total fall used. 

Horse-power of 
wheels. 

Kansas 

^lissouri 

Kansas 

9 

8 

317 

Delaware.. ... 

Kansas 

... do 

7 

64 

377 

Big Blue. . 

. . .do 

Kan. and Neb. 

16 

103 

1,022 

Little Blue 

Big Blue 


1:1 

1034 

637 

M ost Fork Blue. 

. . .do 

Nebraska 

8 

80 

340 

iS’ortli Fork Blue. 

. . . do 

. . . do 

4 

35 

242 

Smokv Hill 

Kansas 

Kansas 

7 

594 

442 

Snlomon 

Smokv Ilill 

. , .do 

11 

984 


North Fork Solo- 

Solomon 

. . .do 




moil. 



8 

104 

298 

South Fork Solo- 

. . .do 

, . .do 




moil. 



2 

17 

114 

Saline 

Smokv Hill 

. . . do 

6 

72 

199 

Ki’publican 

Kansas 

Kan. and Neb. 

7 

43 


Prairie Dog 

Republican 

. . . do 

6 

71 

152 







Sundry small 

Kansas and tribu- 

...do 

41 

4864 

1,408 

streams. 

taries. 





Total, Kansas river and all tributaries 

145 

1,345 

6,561 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 

I)E LAPPAREXt’s LE90XS DE GEOGRAPHIE PHYSIQUE 

Lcrniis de Geographie physique. By A. de Lapparent. Pp. 590, with many 
illustrations, maps, and diagrams. Paris : Masson et Cie. 1896. 

IM. A. de Lapparent, ju-ofessor in tlie Ecole libre de hcmtes etudes in Paris 
and lately jnesident of the French Geographical Society, lays us under 
many oldigations by the iireparation of this valuable work. An accom- 
jilished field geologist, as evinced, for example, in his monograph on the 
peculiar deformation in the Paris basin known as the Pays de Braj’ ; 
author of a compendious treatise on geology, the leading work of its kind 
in the French language ; a presiding otficer as notable for his courteous 
tact as for his competence in his subject, he now discloses a close acrpiaint- 
ance with a line of study that as yet is hardly acclimated in Europe, 
namely, the American science of geomorphology, whose principles and 
name he adopts together. Although his references to American sources 
overweight the relative importance of contributions from certain quarters, 
he has clearly seized the essentials of the rational as against the empirical 
method of geographical description. The initial forms iiroduced by 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


185 


uplift, deformation, or other genetic processes, the succeeding work of the 
agencies of erosion, the control of dissection by the effective baselevel, 
the gradual and sj'^stematic progress in dissection as determined by the 
advance in time through the geographical cycle, and the termination of 
the normal uninterrupted cycle, of erosion in a plain or peneplain of sub- 
aerial denudation, all these and many other essential features of the 
American treatment are succinctly presented. Numerous illusti’ative ex- 
amples, largely taken from European sources, are presented ; these being 
of particular value to our students of the subject, who are naturally more 
familiar with American occurrences. Following the statement of general 
and special principles, there comes an account of Europe in particular and 
of the world in less detail, which is, I believe, the first serious attempt to 
treat areal geography in this fashion. Local geomorphological studies 
have been attempted elsewhere, but no one has hitheido undertaken to 
discuss the physical geography of the world on these new lines. It goes 
without saying that the treatment must be very unequal, for the physiog- 
raphy of many parts of the world is now as little known as the fauna and 
flora of the remoter regions were known a century ago. 

It is manifest from an examination of this book, as well as from the 
study of various other sources, that the morphology of mountains is in a 
much less advanced state than that of simpler structures. Students of 
the subject will therefore do well to give particular attention to remedy- 
ing this deficiency. At present we read frequently about the height and 
length of ranges, about the rocks of which they are composed, and about 
the influence of mountains on climate, both local and adjacent, as well 
as about their control of the character and distribution of plants and 
animals, but it is very seldom that any critical or detailed morphological 
account is given of the mountains themselves. Their forms are so various, 
so ungeometrical, that they have not yet been reduced to system and 
embodied in a satisfactory terminology, indicative of structure on the one 
hand and of stage of destructional development on the other. Thus de 
Lapparent’s account of the concentric escarpments of the Paris basin is 
more systematically complete than his description of the Pyrenees ; a 
clearer idea is given of the topography characterizing the simplified forms 
of the old mountains of the middle Rhine than of the complicated forms 
of the still vigorous Alps. This is not to be avoided in the present stage 
of the science, but nothing will aid more in carrying us past this stage 
than the preparation of sound general treatises like the one l)efore us. 
Its periLsal must turn many students toward further investigation, and 
new investigators are greatly needed. 

In the matter of citations, the author has been sparing, but this is to 
be the less regretted on account of the exhaustive bibliographic treatment 
of geomorphology in I’enck’s recent MorphoUxjie der Erdoherjldchc vols., 
Stuttgart, 18!)4). The latter book i>resents an exceptionally full account 
of the historical development of physical geography, while the former 
pre.sents a concise acciumt of its present advanced condition, and thus 
the two works comi)lement each other very satisfactorily. 

Whether in [)reparation for a tri|> abroad or for use in study and teach- 
ing at home, de Lapjiarent’s Lxcom must prove very acceptable to Ameri- 
can geographers. W. M. Davis. 


18G 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


ANNUAL REPOKT OK THE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE UNITED STATES 
COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY 

This report is still in the hands of the Public Printer, but bj' the 
courtesy of Gen. W. W. Duffield, Sui)erintendent of the Survey, The 
National Geogiiaimiic ^Magazine is permitted to present its readers with 
the following summary of its contents : 

Tlie report covers the fiscal year ending June 30, 1895. It gives the 
progress of the work in the field and office with the customary detail, 
and the necessary references to several boundary surveys and other 
special surveys of precision of the class usually assigned to this bureau. 

Upwards of seventy-five parties were actively engaged in the various 
branches of the field operations. Work was carried on within the limits 
or on the coasts of sixteen states and territories along the seaboard and 
in nine states and territories in the interior. It included reconnaissance, 
base-line measures, triangulation, topography, hydrography, physical 
hydrography ; time, latitude, longitude, and azimuth determinations ; 
boundary-line surveys, geodetic leveling; magnetic declination, dip and 
intensity observations ; laying out meridian lines, gravity determina- 
tions ; tidal and current observations ; oyster-bed surveys, etc. 

Among the surveys of special importance are the completion of the 
topographic and hydrographic resurvey of Boston harbor and vicinity ; 
the beginning of the resurvey of Buzzards bay ; the continuation of the 
telegraphic longitude determinations in the southwest ; the progress on 
the traiLSContinental triangulation in Colorado and the oblique arc in 
Alal)ama; points furnished in aid of state surveys in Tennessee, Ken- 
tucky, New Jersey and Minnesota; the completion of the I’econnaissance 
of the Kio Grande from its mouth to El Paso; the completion of the re- 
survey of Pensacola bay and its tributaries ; the surveys for the location 
of the boundary line Iietween southeastern Alaska and British Columbia ; 
the survey of the California oblique boundary line and the topographic 
and hydrographic resurvey of San Francisco bay and harbor. 

Tlie line of preci.se spirit-levels from tidewater was continued to Kansas 
City, and the usual progress was made in surveying those portions of the 
coasts not yet fully charted, including the channels of Washington sound, 
the strait of Fuca, and the hydrographic development of the intricate 
channels of the .Alexander archipelago in southeast Alaska. 

The report records the death of Lieut. F. H. Crosby and four men en- 
gaged in the prosecution of the field work, who were drowned while 
attempting to land through the surf on the coast of Washington. This 
is commented upon as the most serious casualty that has hapiiened to any 
of the field parties of the Survey since the loss of the Walker in 185G. 

In accordance with the provisions of law, one of the assistants has con- 
tinued to serve as a member of the Mississippi River Commission, and 
another, by appointment of the President, is a member of the Interna- 
tional Boundary Commission, organized for the location of that part of the 
United States and IMexican boundary line extending from El Paso to the 
Pacific. At the request of the Secretary of the Navy two assistants were 
temporarily detailed, one for special triangulation in connection with 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


187 


marking the speed trial course in Long Island sound, and the other for a 
survey on a large scale of the vicinity of the dry dock at Port Orchard, 
Puget sound. Assistants were detailed during the j^ear at the i-equest of 
the Governor of Virginia for surveys of the Virginia oyster beds, and a 
special survey of the Fox islands, Chesapeake bay, for the settlement of 
some questions of riparian rights, and at the request of the Commissioner 
of Fish and Fisheries to make further examination of the oyster beds in 
Mobile bay and vicinity. The detail of an assistant for the Massachusetts 
State town boundary survey also continued during the greater part of the 
year. The surve}'S for the location of the boundary between Alaska and 
British Columbia, that have been conducted by the Superintendent for 
several years past in his capacity as commissioner on the part of the 
United States, were continued during the season of available working 
weather, and the parties organized in the spring of 1895 completed all the 
work necessary for the compilation of the maps required. Under the 
head of special surveys, mention is also made of the act of Congress of 
August 1, 1894, requiring the Superintendent to lay out a circle around 
the new Naval Observatory for the deflection of the street extensions of 
the city ; the work was duly completed and the results with maps show- 
ing location delivered to the Navy Department. 

The report of operations in the otflce is given in great detail. The pub- 
lications of the Survej’’ relate essentially to the navigation of the coasts 
of the United States; but in the preparation of the tide tables for the 
new year a commendable departure seems to have been made by includ- 
ing ]>redictions for the principal ports of the w'orld. Seventy-five new 
charts were issued and one hundred and twenty-eight charts were revised 
and reissued. The new chart publications complete the series of the 
Atlantic and Gulf coasts on the uniform scale of 1 : 400,000, designed 
especially for the use of navigators, and the series on the coast of INIaine 
on the large scale of 1 : 40,000, designed for the safe navigation of the in- 
tricate jjassages of that broken and rock-bound coast. The distribution of 
charts during the year is reported at 51,450 copies, more than half the 
number having been sold by the agents in the princijial maritime cities. 
There were also distributed 114,000 copies of tbe monthly notices to mai i- 
ners, describing the important hydrographic develoi)inents and changes 
in aids to navigation on tlie coasts of the United States. 

The “ Bureau of Standard Weiglits ami ISIeasures,” whicii is also under 
the direction of the Superintendent (jf the Survey, reports that duplicate 
setsof.standanls liad l)een furnished the states of North and South Dakota, 
besides tlie customary routine work. Reference is also made to the new 
Kilo 1)alance of precision recently obtaiiu'd by the Burcuui. It is a dui)li- 
cate of the balance of the International Bureau and is tlie second brought 
to this country. The otlier is in the Smithsonian Institution and was 
used Ijy I’rofe.ssor Morley in tlie determination of atomic weights. The 
special features of these balances are auxiliary devices which enable the 
observer to note the oscillations of the beam from a distance and to inter- 
change the weights uiion the scale- pans without approaching the balance. 
The probable error of a single weighing with a load of one kilogramme is 
only ± 0“*.()2:i(). 


188 


MISCELLANEA 


In presenting his estimates for the next year the Superintendent urges 
a moderate increase in the api^ropriation for field work as necessary to 
the rapid and economical prosecution of the surveys urgently demanded 
in the interests of commerce along our coasts, and for the advancement 
of other imi)Ortant field operations of the survey, which, he states, are 
found to be impracticable with the amount appropriated for the current 
year. The estimates contemplate resurveys of several important harbors 
on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts ; also the commencement of a survey 
of the Aleutian islands and an examination of the mouths of the Yukon 
river in Alaska in addition to the work in progress. 

Besides the publications referring to nautical matters, the survey issues 
bulletins at irregular intervals intended to impart advance information 
on new discoveries or other matter relating to the survey ; and appendices 
to the report of the Superintendent giving scientific results and other de- 
velopments incidental to the progress of the work. Four bulletins were 
issued during the year and the report has appendices on the following 
subjects : The Secular Variation in Direction and Intensity of the Earth’s 
Magnetic Force in the United States and Some Adjacent Countries ; Ob- 
servations of the Transit of Mercury at Washington in 1894 ; Results of 
Latitude and Longitude Determinations in Alaska ; Physical Hydrog- 
raphy, Nantucket, Mass. ; Notes on the Specific Gravity of the Waters of 
the Gulf of ^lexico and the Gulf Stream ; A Graphic Method of Reducing 
Stars from ^lean to Apparent Places ; A Description of Improved Leveling 
Rods and a Report on the New Kilo Balance of Precision. 

Herbert G. Ogdex. 


MISCELLANEA 

In Santo Domingo important governmental concessions have been 
granted to an American corporation. From Puerto Plata, a seaport of 
18,000 inhabitants, at which from 12 to 15 steamers enter monthly, a rail- 
road is being constructed to Santiago and Mora. 

American capitalists have purchased the entire street-railway system 
of the city of ^Mexico, comprising 100 miles of broad gauge and 60 miles 
of narrow gauge, over which seventeen and one-half millions of passen- 
gers were carried in 1895. Electric traction and other improvements are 
contemplated. 

Two summer courses in physiography will be given by Professor W. ^I. 
Davis at Harvard University, beginning July 3 and lasting six weeks. 
The chief object of the elementary course is to promote the change in the 
method of teaching geography so generally advocated in recent j’ears, 
and the lectures will be supplemented by laboratory work and excursions. 
The advanced course will be specially adai)ted to the needs of those 
already well grounded in the elements of physiograpln\ The admirable 
library and laboratory resources of the university will be available for the 
use of students, and as the fee for either course is only §20, there should 
be a large attendance. 


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A JAUNT INTO MEXICO. 

Twenty }'ears ago Mexico was practically a closed countr\' to 
the tourist from the United States. Then , the facilities for 
transportation were such that the journey into the quaint land 
lying to the South of us implied weeks of arduous travel, which 
only those inured to hardships could stand. Now, the tourist 
gets into his Pullman Sleeper at New Orleans and the Southern 
Pacific quickly lands him in “the land of the afternoon.” The 
way leads through the beautiful bayou region of Louisiana, 
then amid the vast pine forests that fringe the eastern edge of 
the Lone Star State, past Houston, the great cotton mart, and 
San Antonio, the beautiful city of the Alamo and the Missions. 
At Spofford the Mexico sleej^er swings off from the main line 
and in a little while one crosses the Rio Grande at Eagle Pass, 
and finds one’s self upon the soil of the sister Republic. From 
here to Torreon the way leads over the Mexican International, 
and then straight down the Mexican Central, past many quaint 
and Medieval towns, through fertile valleys, where men are 
plowing with slow-moving oxen, over mountain pas.ses, where 
the hill tops flatten into grotesque shapes — to the City of 
Mexico. Every mile of the way is fraught with novel interest. 
At each stop the train makes, quaint groups gathered at the 
station claim attention. Their dress is picture.sque, their speech 
is vigorous but musical. They importune one with all sorts of 
confections and trinkets for sale. The domed cities and towns 
which line the way or are visible in the distance, have the at- 
mosphere of villages in Palestine. One may make a visit 
limited by days, or wander for weeks and not be satiated. The 
interest of the city itself is inexhaustible, while Zacatecas, the 
great mining center perched high among the mountains ; Guada- 
lajara, the Boston of the country ; San Luis Potosi, with its 
architecture and its art, or Vera Cruz or Tampico, lying amid 
coffee and banana plantations upon the seacoast, are but a few 
of the hundreds of places that attract and charm. You will 
never regret a journey into Mexico, which can be made so 
cheaply and expeditiously via New Orleans and the Southern 
Pacific. Consult the nearest Southern Pacific agent for rates 
and information, or write to S. P'. B. Moksk, General Pas.senger 
and Ticket Agent, Southern Pacific Company, New Orleans, La. 




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National Geographic Monographs 

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LIST OF MONOGRAPHS COMPRISING VOLUME I : 


General Physiographic Processes . . - . 

General Physiographic Features - - - - - 

Physiographic Regions of the United States 
Beaches and Tidal Marshes of the Atlantic Coast 
Present and Extinct Lakes of Nevada - - - 

Appalachian Mountains— Northern Section 
Appalachian Mountains— Southern Section - 
Mt. Shasta — a Typical Extinct Volcano - - - 

The New England Plateau 

Niagara Falls and Its History 


|j. W. Powell 

Prof. N. S. Shaler 
Prof. I. C. Russell 
Bailey Willis 
C. Willard Hayes 
J. S. Diller 
Prof. W. M. Davis 
G. K. Gilbert 


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Tlie AMERICAN GEOLOGIST lays before its readers from month to month the latest 
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The National Geographic Magazine, 

NOW PUBLISHED MONTHLY, 


miinbers among its contributors the following well-known writers on the different 

branches of geographic science: 


Mr. Cyrus C. Adams, New York. 

Dr. Cyrus Adler, Smithsouiau Institution. 

Mr. Marcus Baker, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. vS. N. 

Dr. Francis Brown, Union Theol. Seminary. 

Hon. Jefferson B. Browne, Collector of Cus- 
toms at Key West. 

Dr. E. L. Corthell, C. E., New York. 

Dr. Elliott Coues. 

Hon. William E. Curtis, ex-Director of the 
Bureau of the American Republics. 

Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
American Ethnology. 

Dr. Charles W. Dabney, Jr., Assistant Secre- 
tary of Agriculture. 

Dr. Win. H. Dali, Smithsonian Institution. 

Dr. George Davidson, President of the Geo- 
graphical Society of the Pacific. 

Mr. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Wm. M. Davi.s, Profes.sor of Physical Geog- 
rapln- in Harvard University. 

Dr. David T. Day, Chief of the Div. of Mining 
Statistics and Technology, U. S. Geol. Sur. 

Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Hon. John W. I'oster, ex-Secretary of State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Geographer, U. S. 
Geological Survey and iith Census. 

Mr. G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey. 

3en. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief Signal 
Officer, War Department. 

Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
National Geographic .Society. 

Dr Mark W. Harrington, President of the Uni- 
versity of the State of Washington. 

Lieut. Everett Hayden, U. S. N., Secretary of 
the National Geographic Society. 

Mr. Robert T. Hill, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Wm. II. Holnie.s. Dir. of the Dept, of .■An- 
thropology', Field Coluni. Museum, Chicago. 

Dr. Emil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. Sheldon Jackson, U. S. Commissioner of 
Education for .Alaska. 


Mr. Willard D. Johmson, U. S. Geol. Survey. 

Mr. Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 

Mr. George Kennan. 

Prof. William Uibbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J, 

Prof. E. McClure, University of Oregon. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
nology. 

Mr. John E. McGrath, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S. N. 

Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Ma.ss. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Ornithologist and Mam- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John H. Mitchell, U. S. S. 

Prof. W. L- Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. Frederick H. Newell, Chief Hy'drographer 
of the U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Lieut. Robert E- Peary, U. S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. vS. 

Mr. William H. Pickering, Professor of Astron- 
omy in Harvard University. 

Major John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of American Ethnology. 

Prof. W. B. Powell, Superintendent of Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Hon. John R. Procter, Pre.sident of the U. S. 
Civil Service Commission. 

Mr. Israel C. Russell, Professor of Geology in 
the University of Michigan. 

Dr. N. S. Shaler, Professor of Geology in Har- 
vard University. 

Commander Charles D. Sigsbee, Hydrographer 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Navy Dept. 

Miss Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore. 

Commander Z. L- Tanner, U. S. N. 

Mr. F'rank Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U S. 
Geological .Survey. 

Mrs. Fannie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


PRINCIPAL CONTENTS OF RECENT NUMBERS. 

JANUARY. — Russia in Europe, with map, Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard; The Arctic Cruise 
of the U. S. Revenue Cutter “Bear,” with illiustrations. Dr. Sheldon Jackson; The 
Scojie and Value of Arctic Phxploration, Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A. 

FEBRUARY. — Venezuela: Her Government, People, and Boundary, with map and illustra- 
tions, William E. Curtis; The Panama Canal Route, with illu.slrations. Prof. Robert!'. 
Hill; The Tehuantepec Ship Railway, with maps, 1C. L. Corthell, C. 1C., LL. D. ; The 
Present State of the Nicaragua Canal, Gen. A. W. Greely ; iCxplorations by the Bureau 
of .American ICthnology, W J McGee. Also map of the Orinoco valley^ sho7vini> territory 
drained by that walenn'ay and its beariny^ on the I 'eneznelan Itoundary Question. 

MARCH. — The So-Calle<l “Jeannette Relics,” Prof. Wm. H. Dali ; Nansen’s Polar ICxjiedi- 
tion, Gen. A. W. Greely; Tiie Submarine Cables of the World, Gustave Herrle ; The 
Survey and Subdivision of Indian Territory, with map and illustration, Henry Gannett ; 
“ I'ree Burghs” in the Unileil States, James H. Blodgett, rllso chart, /g .v jo inches, 
showing Submarine Telegraph Cables of the World and Principal Land Lines. P'ull- 
pas^e portraits of I)r. Nansen and Prof. IPm. II. Dull. 

APRIL. — Seriland, with map ainl illustration, W J McGee and Willard 1). Johnson ; The 
01vmj)ic Country, with maj), the lale S. C. Gilman ; The Discovery of Glacier Bay, 
Ala.ska, Eliza Ridiamah Scidim)re ; Hydrography in the United States, loederick H. 
Newell ; Recent Triangnlation in the Ca.scades, ,S. ,S. Gannett ; The Altitude of Mt. 
Ailams, W.'Lshington, ICdgar .McClure. 

may.- -A frica .since iSH8, with sjiecial reference to .South Africa and .Al)yssinia, with map, 

■ Hon. Gardiner G. Hnbbanl ; I'nndamental Geogr.ijihic Relation of the !'hree .Americas, 
with map. Prof. Robert!'. Hill ; The Kansas River, .Arthur P. Davis, .llso portrait of 
lion. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the National Geographic Society. 

25 Cents per Number or $2.50 per Year. 




THE JUNE NUMBER 




OF 






will contain among other important articles 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, 

i 

AND 

THE MOSELLE, 

By professor WILLIAM M. DAVIS, 

Of Harvard University ; 

AND 

ACROSS THE GULF BY RAIL 
TO KEY WEST, 

By JEFFERSON B. BROWNE, 

Collector of Customs of the Port of Key West; 



ALSO A PORTRAIT OF 


GENERAL A. W. GREELY, U. S. A. 


JUDD & DETWEILER, PRINTERS, WASHINGTON, D. C. 



VII 


JUNE, 1896 


The 


75 


No. 6 




?73 




Honorary Editor; JOHN BtYDE 

' ! ■ ' j 

Honorary Associate Editors / 

J MoOEir-^ HliTzW-iWHAMf AH SCIDiMORE 


A. W. GREEliY 


CONTENTS 

FRONTISPIECE: PORTRAIT OF OENERAl. A. W ^REBLY, S. A.. 

Chief ISl^aal Officer. 

THE SEINE, THE MEUSE. AND THE MOSELLE. WILLIAM M. DAVIS., 189 
With maps. 

ACROSS THE GULF BY RAIL TO KEY WEST.- 


/ 

/ 


JEFFERSON B. BROWNE. 203 
A GEOGRAPHICAL DESCRIPTION OP THE BRITISH ISLANDS. 208 

THE MEXICAN CENSUS 211 

Geographic Literature, p. 212; Proceedings of The National Geographic Society, 
p. 214; Geographic Notes, p. 217; MiscOUanea, p. 220. 


rnuT'^ifKD inMiih: n.\ti()N.\i. (jko<iu.\imiio 

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THE 


National Geograp'hic Society 

ORGANIZED, JANUARY, 1S8S 


Presidknt 

GARDINER G. IIUBPnRD 


MARCUS BAKER 
WILLIAIM II. DALE 
G. K. (ULBERT 

Tkeasukeh ■ 

CHARLES .T. BELL 

Riccokding Secretary Corresponding Secretary 

EVERETT HAYDEN ' HENRY GANNETT 


\ ICE- Presidents 


A. W. (HIEELY 
C. HART MERRIAM 
HERDERT G. OGDEN 


iVlANAGERS 

II. F. BLOUNT 
C. W. DABNEY, Jr. 

DAVID T. DAY 
JOHN HYDE 


W J McGEE 
F. II . NEWELL 
W. B. POWELL 
J. B. WIGHT 


Ml 





THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 


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NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XX 



GEN. A. W. GREELY, U. S. ARMY 

( Gold Medallist of the Royal Geographical Society, and of 
the Societe de Geographie de Paris) 


{By the courtesy of Roberts Brothers, Publishers) 


THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

VoL. VII JUNE, 1896 No. 6 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 

B}’- MTlliam M. Davis 
Professor of Physical Geography in Harvard University 

The three rivers . — The narrow basin of the INIeuse lies between 
the widespreading branches of the Seine on the west and of the 
Moselle on the east. The slender trunk stream of the Meuse, 
with hardly a 
tributary on 
either side, is 
like one of 
t Ii o s e tall, 
close-trimmed 
po})lars that 
the traveler 
often sees 
along the na- 
tional roads of 
France, and 
the compari- 
son is not alto- 
gether inapt, 
for there is 
good reason to 

think that the Figuke r.— The. \ra1>iciimn1>er.s on this figure show the cUflerent 
M e U S e h a S 'orations of the otlier figures used in this article. Tlie Roman 
,, , numbers show the location of the page plates, 

really been 

trimmetl of certain branches which have been diverted to the 
basins ot its larger neighbors. Its basin is, indeed, like the 

1.3 



190 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


dwindling territory of a petty prince between the encroaching 
kingdoms of powerful rulers on either side. The evidence of this 
will appear when we examine the characteristics of the three rivers. 

TJie vigorov,s meanders of the Seine . — The Seine, after gathering 
in its upper branches both above and below Paris, pursues a 
strongly meandering course to the sea. Its lower valley is sunk 
with rather steep sides in a comparatively even upland, which 
itself is a surface of denudation. Although without complete 
])roof on this point, I am led to suppose that this gently rolling 
upland is an uplifted peneplain — that is, a denuded region that 
was once reduced to a surface of moderate relief close to its con- 
trolling Ijaselevel, and then raised Ijy some gentle process of 
elevation to its present altitude. During the development of the 
})eneplain the Seine, the master river of the region, must have 
attained an extremely faint grade, and at the same time have 
taken on tlie halnt of swinging from side to side in comparatively 
regular curves or meanders such as are characteristic of rivers 
with gentle sloi)e. With the uplift of the region the meandering 
river would proceed to incise its channel beneath the uplifted 
surface, and thus Ram.say accounted for its peculiar intrenched 
meanders many years ago. They seem to be features of old age 
retained in youth of the present cycle of denudation as an in- 
heritance from an advanced stage of a preceding cycle. 

In the second C3^cle of denudation, now in progress, the belt 
of country inclosed by lines tangent to the outer meander curves 
of the Seine seems to have broadened to greater Avidth than it 
possessed before the uplift of the region occurred. The evidence 
of this is seen in the long sloping descent of each tongue of land 
which enters one of the river curves and from which the river 
seems to have receded, while the outer side of the swinging cur- 
rent undercuts a bluff of steep descent from the upland, as if 
the river were pressing against it. If the meandering river had 
cut down its channel vertically the slopes on the two sides of its 
present course should be symmetrical.* The reason for the in- 
creased breadth of the meander belt appears to be in the increased 
velocity given to the river in consequence of the uplift of the 
region. Many similar cases might be mentioned, but none show 
more clearh’ than the Seine the special features of an invigorated 
river. The great curves around which it savings fit in nearly all 
cases close to the bluff on their outer side. It is an able-bodied 
river, a river of a robust habit of life. 


*See note Vjy A. Winslow in Science, 1893. 






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( 'onihoTct’^ 

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.J- JKaiuiy^, 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXI 


VALLEY OF THE SEINE, NEAR DUCLAIR 
Sheet ;'/, Ma-p of France, / . So.ooo 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


191 


The case of the Ste. Auslreberte . — Not far below the city of Rouen 
and precisely at the small town of Duclair, on the north hank 
of the Seine, there is an interesting little occurrence strongly 
confirmatory of the invigorated habit of the swinging river. 
Duclair is situated on the outer side of a large north-turninsr 
meander. Into this north-turning meander descends a Ions: 
sloping spur from the upland south of the river ; east and west 
of Duclair similar long sloping spurs descend from the northern 
upland into the adjacent south-turning meanders. On looking 
closely at the map of the country or, still better, on looking over 
the region itself from the top of the bluff at the back of the town, 
it is seen that the western of the two northern spurs is obliquely 
cut across b_y a narrow, diy, flat-hottomed valley, Avhich is just 
in continuation of the course of a little stream known as the Ste. 
Austreberte, coming from the northeast and mouthing in the 
Seine at Duclair. The dry valley was evidentl}’ at one time fol- 
lowed by the lower course of this stream, and it is still followed 
by tbe highway and the railway, for which it serves for a “ short- 
cut” on their way down the Seine. (See Plate XXI.) 

The question then arises. Why has the stream deserted so well 
])repared a path ? The answer is not far to seek. The change 
evidently occurred because the Duclair meander of the Seine 
pushed its inclosing bluff further and further north until the 
river cut through the ridge that separated it from the Ste. Aus- 
treberte and thus tempted that stream to desert its lower course. 
This little fact, taken in connection with the sloj^es of the dove- 
tailing spurs, fully justifies the opinion that the Seine is a most 
vigorous river, not only competent to swing around the curves 
of its former meanders, but demanding an increased radius for 
every curve, and thus widening its meander belt. Here and 
there, it is true, the swinging course of the river departs some- 
what irregularly from the round curves of its valley, as if the 
river had shrunk somewhat awa}’’ from the strong curves which 
it once followed. This may ])erhaps l)e ex[)lained as the result 
of the diminishing velocity of the river, now that it has cut its 
new valley deep l^elow the adjacent upland and close to tbe con- 
trolling baselevel, but the irregularities are exce[)tional and 
they need not be further considered. As a whole, the river may 
be regarded as an able-bodied stream turning vigorously from 
curve to curve on its way to the sea.* 

♦An iicoiclent of the Ste. Aiifitrel)erto tyjie is found in the valley of the Marne a short 
distance helow .Meaux, where the Grand Morin now joins tlio Marne at Isles-les-Villo- 
noy, ahandoniiif^a former lower course which I6d it to I’rccy. 


192 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


The robust habit of the Moselle . — Let us next glance at the lower 
course of the Moselle. Passing below its upper branching course 
and following it below Treves through the highlands to the Rliine, 
we find here again a most serpentine valley incised beneath the 
general upland of the region. Ascending from the valley bot- 
tom, which the traveler ordinarily follows, to the level of the 
inclosing upland, it is even more manifest here than in north- 
western France that we have to do with an uplifted and well- 
dissected peneplain. The surrounding region is one in which 
the rocks are greatly deformed, possessing all the characteristics 
of mountain structure, but few of the characteristics of mountain 
height. Indeed, the upland between Treves and the Rhine is 
one of the best examples of an uplifted peneplain that I have 
seen. The gently rolling surface shows little regard for the great 
diversity in the attitude of its rocks. Here and there it is still 
surmounted by low, linear eminences, such as the Idarwald and 
the Soonwald, following the strike of resistant quartzites. These 
I would call “ monadnocks,” taking the name from a t3q:>ical 
residual mountain which surmounts the uplifted peneplain of 
New England in southwestern New Hampshire. 

But how has the Moselle come to follow a meandering valley 
deejfiy incised in the ])eneplain? It is manifest, from what is 
now known concerning the geological development of land sur- 
faces, that during the later stages of the denudation of the middle 
Rhine higlilands the streams of the region must have flowed 
idl}'' along meandering courses with gentle sloi)e in channels 
little below the surrounding surface ; hut at present the streams, 
and especially the master rivers of the region, have deeply in- 
cised courses inclosed by steep-sided valle3^s. Clearly, then, the 
region has been uplifted since the denudation of the peneplain 
and is now well entered in a second cycle of denudation. The 
meanders developed in the later stages of the previous cycle of 
denudation are inherited in the earl3^ stage of the present C3^1e. 

It is worth noting, however, that there seems to have been a 
pause during the general elevation of the region, for the valley 
of the INIoselle ma3" be described as a narrow, meandering trench 
cut in a wide-open, flat-bottomed trough, the trough being sunk 
well beneath the general surface of the adjacent upland. The 
same sequence of forms may be clearly recognized in the valle3'' 
of the Rhine, particularl3’^ in the neighborhood of Bacharach, 
where the old river alluvium still lies on the floor of the uplifted 
trough, although the existing river trench is sunk several him- 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXII 















Gof5^7^ 

i\\r 




HOH«ii petERs 


VALLEY OF THE MOSELLE, NEAR BERNCASTEL 
SlueC Map of the German Empire, i : foo.ooo 



THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


193 


dred feet beneath it. It must therefore be concluded from the 
relation of the upland, the trough, and the trench that the uplift 
of the region to its present height was accomplished in two 
movements, and that a longer interval of comparative rest fol- 
lowed tlie first movement than has yet elapsed since the second ; 
but it must also be understood that the time that has elapsed 
from the first of these movements to the present day is very 
short compared to the long cycle of denudation during which 
the ancient mountains of the region were worn down to the gen- 
eral surface of the peneplain. 

The meanders which the Moselle now follows in its serpentine 
trench are therefore to be regarded as the inheritance of a me- 
andering habit that it acquired on the floor of the trough ; but 
here, as in the case of the Seine, the present width of the meander 
belt is somewhat greater than the width of the former belt, judg- 
ing from the difference in the slopes of the interior spurs and 
the steep bluffs opposite them on the outer side of the river 
curves. The Moselle, like the Seine, swings around its curves 
with a robust, full-bodied action, nowhere hesitating to make the 
circuit with strong pressure on its outside bank. 

The tivo cut-offs above Berncastel . — At several points the spurs 
from the upland have very narrow necks through which the 
valley railway passes in “ short-cut” tunnels. Although I have 
not found any example of the diversion of a side stream by the 
lateral growth of the river meanders, yet such a change is im- 
minent just above Piinderich, where the ridge between the Moselle 
and the Alfbach is reduced to a very narrow measure. But it 
does appear that just above Berncastel the INIoselle has played 
U[)on itself the same trick that the Seine has played upon the 
Ste. Austreberte. The Moselle at this point has an excei>tion- 
ally straight course, but to the right and left of it rise two isolated 
hills, inclosed by troughs of horseshoe shape whose outer slopes 
rise to the general uplands. From the study of the maps at 
home I had come to the opinion that these troughs represented 
former meanders of the river, now abandoned in favor of the 
more direct intermediate course, and an insi>ection of the district 
on the ground has confirmed this belief. 1 presume the fact is 
well known to students of river habits abroad.* (See Plate 
XXII.) 

Nothing can be more satisfactory than the agreement shown 
between the features of these abandoned meanders and of the 

♦Soe, for e.xnmple, II. Orobo, Ueber 'rbiilbilduiiK mif der linken Klielnuolte, Jubrb. 
k. itroiiHH. gool. LiindoHiitiKt., 188.'i, 187. 


194 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


meanders still occupied Ijy the river farther down the trench. 
The radius of curvature is essentially the same in the several 
cases. The slopes on the outsides of the troughs have the char- 
acteristic, hlufi-like descent from the upland. The isolated hills 
are the ends of interlocking spurs, now dissevered from the up- 
lands hy the cross-cut of the river ; the ends of these hills that 
project into the horseshoe troughs have the comparative!}" gentle 
descent of the spurs that are elsewhere found projecting into the 
actual meanders. Not only so ; the eastern branch of the south- 
ern horseshoe is just opposite and in line with the western branch 
of the northern horseshoe. There can he no doubt that the vigor- 
ous Moselle has here so earnestly swung against its outer bank 
that it has actually shortened its own course by cutting through 
the narrow necks of the intervening spurs. Perhaps I am giving 
too much emphasis to this occurrence. It is not a great rarity, 
for similarly abandoned river meanders are not infrequent in 
other })lateaus. They are known in the plateau of Wiirtemberg, 
where it is trenched by the Neckar at Lauffen and just above, 
and in the plateau of western Pennsylvania, trenched by the Ohio 
and its branches. It is not, however, the mere occurrence of 
these cut-off meanders, but rather the lesson that they teach, that 
deserves emphasis. They all indicate strong river action. The 
Moselle must therefore be regarded as an able-bodied, vigorous 
river, like the Seine. 

Tlte staggering Mease . — Let us now look at the INIeuse. From 
some distance above Commercy, down stream as far as Verdun 
and beyond, this river, like the others, follows a well-defined 
meandering valley, incised beneath uplands on either side. As 
before, the slope of the bluffs on the outer side of the valley 
curves is comparatively steep, while the slope of the spurs on the 
inner side of the curves is relatively gentle. Just above Com- 
mercy, near Sarcy-sur-Meuse, one of the spurs is almost cut 
through and is now connected with its upland l>y a very narrow 
and low neck, which alone separates the Hood-plain of the curv- 
ing valley on either side. The railway and canal both save dis- 
tance by cutting across the low neck. At Dun-sur-Meuse the 
neck of a former spur is entirely cut through. It now stands as 
an isolated hill surrounded on all sides hy the flat valley floor.* 

*The Etat-major map, 1 : 80,000, suggests three other abandoned meanders : one east 
of Lin 3 '-devant-Dun ; another northeast of Letanne; the third southwest of Mouzon. 
The cutting of some of these meanders may have occurred early in the history of the 
valley. At Koeur-la petite, below Commercy, the map shows the railway and canal run- 
ning through a depression in the neck of a spur that extends toward Han-sur-Meuse, 
and I suppose that the Ste. Austreberte case is here paralleled. 



NAT GEOG. MAG 


VOL. VII 


1896 


PL. XXIII 





VALLEY OF THE MEUSE, NEAR ST. MIHIEL 


Sheet «/ France, i 


80,000 




i 




I 


I 

i 

> 

I- 



LlOIl-<ipiPs iqj 




ik^ 


<;V 




!=6^S- 


VALLE.Y OF THE MEUSE, NEAR DUN-SUR-MEUSE 
Shet'l J5, .Vap of France, j : 80,000 


NAT. GEOG. mag. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXIV 


Wk:''^^i£F 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


195 


It is manifest, then, that this valley was excavated by a river 
hardly less vigorous than those that cut the valleys of the Seine 
and the Moselle, but the vigorous river that was once here is 
now nowhere to be found. The floor of the valley is at present 
occupied for the most part by broad, green meadows, instead 
of by a free-swinging current of water, and the only stream to be 
found is the little Meuse, wandering here and there on the broad 
meadows and staggering with most uncertain step around the 
valley curves. It wriggles from place to place, now touching 
this side of the valley, now that, swinging indifferently against 
the steep bluffs and gentle slopes of the spurs, sometimes even 
running for a short distance up the valley in its irregular j)ath. 
Is it not then clear that since the time when this winding valley 
was made there has been a great diminution in the volume of 
water that follows it ? No other conclusion seems admissible; 
and hence a reason for the loss of volume must be sought. (See 
Plates XXIII and XXIV.) 

The loss of volume cannot be ascribed to any climatic change, 
for that should have affected the Seine and Moselle as well. 
May it then be ascribed to a change of the area drained, Avhereby 
the Seine and the Moselle gained the drainage area which the 
Meuse lost? If this were so, the Meuse would have become 
smaller and smaller, while the Seine and Moselle grew larger 
and larger. The dwindling Meuse would have lost the power of 
swinging boldly around its valley curves ; it would have fallen 
into the present timid habit of staggering, after the fashion of 
other small streams, but at the same time the Seine and the 
Moselle would have been confirmed in their vigorous habit of 
swinging freely around the curves of their valle}^s. Is it pos- 
sible, then, that the side branches of the Meuse have really been 
trimmed from the trunk river, and that the trimmed l)ranches 
have been engrafted into the s}^stems of the Seine and the Moselle ? 

The migration of river divides . — The question thus raised leads 
to a consideration of the general problem of the shifting or migra- 
tion of river divides, a subject that is of particular interest to the 
student of ])li3^sical geogra[)hy. At first sight one would be in- 
clined to think that the crest-line of a divide l)etween adjacent 
river basins would merely waste lower and lower as it weathered 
away, without shifting laterally, and therefore without causing 
any change in the area of the adjacent drainage basins. It is 
probable, however, that this sini[)le process is of very rare occur- 
rence in nature. It is much more likely that the line of the 


196 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


divide will move more or less to one side or the other as it 
weathers away, on account of the unequal rate of wasting of its 
two slopes. The possible causes of unequal wasting are various- 
The declivity of the two slopes may differ, .in which case the 
steep slope wastes faster than the other and the divide is veiy 
slowly pushed toward the flatter slope. The rocks underlying 
the two slo]3es ma}^ be of different resistance ; then the weaker 
one will, as a rule, waste away the faster, and the divide will 
gradually migrate toward the more resistant rocks. Again, the 
agencies of erosion may be of different activities on the two 
slopes; one slope may have a greater rainfall than the other, or 
may suffer a greater number of alterations from freezing to melt- 
ing. Although the last is generall}’’ a subordinate cause, it prob- 
ably contributes in a small way to the solution of the problem 
as a whole. 

The shifting of the divide as thus explained is generally accom- 
] dished by a slow migration. In some cases, however, when the 
divide is pushed to the very side of a stream whose basin it 
inclosed, then a little further change diverts all the upper drain- 
age of this stream into the encroaching basin, and with this 
change the divide makes a sudden leap around the upi)er waters 
of the diverted river, after which the slow migration may be 
resumed. The movement of a divide may therefore be described 
as alternately creeping and leaping. 

Whether this process is of very general importance or not can 
hardly be decided at the present time; but there are certain 
regions in which its application is most illuminating to the 
studies of the physical geographer. Philippson has brought the 
subject to general attention in his Studien ilber Wasserscheiden, 
where a full account of what others have done up to 1<S85 may 
be found. Oldham has told how certain headwaters of the In- 
dian rivers are pushing their divides through the innermost of 
the Himalayan ranges, and thus acquiring drainage area that 
formerly Ijelonged to the interior streams of the elevated Thi- 
betan plateau. This example is one of the best in which the 
process depends chiefly on the unequal declivity of the slopes 
on the two sides of the divide. Heim has described the depre- 
dations of the Maira in beheading the upper course of the Inn, 
thus accounting in a most beautiful manner for the little lakes 
at the head of the Engadine valley, wdiere this contest is going 
on. The special map of the Ober-Engadine, published in 1889, 
on a scale of 1 : 50,000, by the Swiss topographical bureau, gives 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


197 


fine illustration of the significant features of river interaction in 
this region. 

A remarkable case of river diversion occurs in the shift of the 
course of the Vistula from its former path down the valle}" now 
occupied by the Netze to a more northward course, by which it 
flows directly to the Baltic sea, the point of change being at the 
town of Bromberg. This is well illustrated on the Prussian topo- 
graphical maps, and has been described in a general way by 
various writers on the geograph}^ of North Germany. Whether 
it was caused by the spontaneous interaction of streams com- 
peting for drainage area or not, I shall not at this distance ven- 
ture to say, but shall hope to find a full explanation of the 
change in a forthcoming essay by Berendt. Jukes-Brown has 
described an interesting case in England, where the Trent cap- 
tured the headwaters of the Wytham, and in a recent volume 
of the Geographical Journal of London I have attempted a more 
general treatment of the same region. Readers who wish to fol- 
low the subject into examples of greater intricacy may find some 
problematic examples in the rivers of Penns^dvania and northern 
New Jersey. * 

In the general discussion of this problem we should recognize 
two divisions. First, the processes by Avhich it is accounted for, 
these having just been summarily described. Second, the topo- 
graphical forms by which its occurrence may be recognized, dis- 
tinction being made between examples occurring in the remote 
or the recent past and others likely to occur in the near or dis- 
tant future. Illustration of the second division of the subject 
can best be given by describing the concrete case of the river 
^larne near Chalons, than whicli no better example lias come to 
my notice an3'where in the world. 

The case of the Marne below Chalons. — In the province of Cliam- 
jiagne the Marne drains an extended interior lowland inclosed 
liy a forested upland on the west. The lowland is the ]>roduct 
of comparatively rapid erosion during late Tertiary time on weak 
upper Cretaceous strata. It is for the most jiart covered b}^ ex- 
tensive farms. The uiiland stands where the lower Tertiarv 
strata have, during the same period of time, more successfully 
resisted erosion. As the dip of the strata is gentl}' westward, the 
eastern margin of the upland is marked by a steep escarpment. 
The .Marne gathers man,y branches from the lowland, and escapes 
on its way to the sea li}' a deep vallc}' cut through the upland. 


♦Tkk Natio.val Gkoohaphic Maoa/.ink, Wiisliingtoii, i, 188f); ii, 1800. 


198 THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 

In this valley it receives two branches on the southern side, to 
which special attention should be given. The first is the Sur- 
melin, whose head is found in the upland near its eastern pre- 
cipitous margin ; but, curiously enough, although this stream of 
course diminishes toward its source near Montmort, the valley 
that it occupies maintains an almost constant width some six 
miles farther, nearly to the escarpment of the upland. The 
second branch is the Petit Morin. This, like the Marne, heads in 
the lowland east of the upland, and also, like the Marne, escapes 
by a deep and narrow valley through the upland. The lowland 
area that it drains is, however, very small, and for about ten 
miles from its head there is an extended marsh, known as the 
Marais de St. Gond, lying partly on the lowlands and partly in 
the entrance to the narrow valley in the U})land. 

In searching for a reason for this arrangement of the Marne 
and its two branches, it is important to notice that if the branches 
were prolonged eastward the}^ would both lead to streams, the 
Soude and the Somme,* flowing for some distance on the low- 
land toward the heads of the branches, but then turning north- 
ward and entering the Marne directl3^ 

The beheading of the Surmelin and the Petit — In explana- 

tion of all these facts let it be supposed that the two pairs, Soude- 
Surmelin and Somme-Morin, were once actuall}" continuous 
streams at a time before the lowland was eroded on the weak 
rocks east of the upland, and let the verity of the supposition be 
tested by the likelihood of a natural, spontaneous change from 
that condition to the present. 

When the paired streams flowed westward, they, like the Marne, 
must have run in the direction of the dip of the strata; hence 
they mav all be called consequent streams. They must all have 
passed from the weak Cretaceous strata to the resistant Tertiary 
strata. The INIarne is much the largest of these three streams, 
and its valley must have-been deepened rapidly, while the other 
valleys must have been deepened slowly. As the valleys were 
deepened they progressively widened, but the widening must 
have been much more rapid on the weak than on the resistant 
strata ; and the deep valle}'’ of the Marne must have widened in 
the weaker strata much more rapidl}" than the neighboring 
shallow valleys of the Soude-Surmelin and the Somme-Morin. 
Now the question arises, will the divides between these three 
valleys shift in such a manner as to alter the assumed original 


* Not to be confused with the river Somme in northwestern France. 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


199 


arrangement to the actual arrangement? Undoubtedl}^ they 
would, and for the following reasons. 

The valley of the Marne being deeper than that of the Soude- 
Surmelin, the divide between the two would be pushed away 
from the larger and toward the smaller streams, and eventually 
the upper course of the Soude-Surmelin would be diverted by a 
growing side branch of the Marne (the lower part of the Sonde), 
and thus led to join that vigorous river, while the lower course 
of the Soude-Surmelin (the Surmelin) would remain as a dimin- 



ished, beheaded river. The side branch of the Marne, wliich 
causes the div'crsion, ]>elongs to the class of streams called sulm- 
qaent. Let us next look at the divide between the Soude-Surmelin 
and the Somme-Morin. At first, as these streams are of about 
equal volume, the divide between them would not be pushed 
significantly to one side or the other, but after the ca))ture of the 
Sonde by a branch of the Marne, the Soude would rapid I deepen 
its valley on the weak strata, and from that time forward the 
di videbetween the Soiideand theSomme-Morin would be system- 
atically pushed toward the latter. Eventually the upper waters 
of this stream would also be diverted to the Marne by the way 


200 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


of the lower Soucle, leaving the lower waters (the Petit Morin) 
as another diminished, beheaded stream ; hut inasmuch as this 
second capture must occur at a much later date than the first, it 
is natural to expect that the beheaded Petit Morin will, at the 
time of capture, have cut a much deeper valley through the up- 
land than was cut by the earlier beheaded stream, the Surmelin. 

The elbow of capture . — Let us call the sharp turn that the di- 
verted headwaters make where they join the diverting stream 
*■ the elbow of capture.” After the capture the rearranged water- 
course will cut a sharply intrenched valley above and below this 
elbow, for the diverted stream, of considerable volume, being 
turned into the head of the diverting stream, where the volume 
is zero, must immediately deepen its channel. As time passes 
the trench will disappear by widening, and hence the occurrence 
of such a trench may be taken as indication of recent rearrange- 
ment. Similarly the diminished, beheaded stream may be more 
or less obstructed by the detritus that is washed into its valle}’’ 
by small lateral branches; thus its flow may be delayed by 
swani])s or it ma}" be even held back in shallow lakes, as the 
Inn is held back in the lakes of Engadine, as described by Heim ; 
but this is also a relatively short-lived condition, for as time 
passes the beheaded stream will adjust its grade to the work 
that its diminished volume has to do and its lakes and swamps 
will disappear. 

In nearly all cases further shortening is enforced upon the 
beheaded stream below the elbow of capture. It deepens its 
valley slowly, while the reinforced subsequent diverter deepens 
its valley with relative rapidity ; hence the divide will be pushed 
away from the elbow of capture and the beheaded stream will 
be progressively diminished. The distance of the source of the 
beheaded stream from the elbow of capture may therefore be 
generally taken as a measure of the remoteness of the time when 
the capture took place. It not infrequently happens that a small 
stream is developed, flowing into the elbow of capture from the 
neighborhood of the source of the beheaded stream, and pro- 
gressivel}" lengthening as the divide is })ushed away and the be- 
headed stream is shortened. Let us call streams of this class, 
flowing against the dip of the strata, obsequent. They will mani- 
festly ])e wanting at elbows of recent capture, but they may attain 
a length of several miles if the capture occurred long enough ago. 

Now, look at the actual arrangement of the streams on the low- 
land west of Chidons and on the upland be}’ond the escarpment. 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


201 


while bearing these deductive criteria in mind. The Somme has 
latel}’’ been captured i)y the growth of a subsequent branch from 
near the elbow of the Soude; for, behold, at the little village of 
Ecury-le-Repos a sharp elbow in the course of this stream and 
a narrow trench for a moderate distance above and below the 
elbow. The Petit Morin is evidently the lower course of the 
Somme. On account of its diminished volume it is for the 
present unable to keep its valley clear of the detritus that is 
washed down from the steep valley sides in the upland, proba- 
bly near Boissy and Le Thoult; hence the great marsh of St. 



Gond and its extensive deposits of ]ieat about the head of the 
stream. The marshy head of the Petit Morin is still close to the 
elbow of ca})ture at Ecury-le-Uepos, and no obscquent stream is 
yet developed in this case. The change is clearly of recent date, 

• Look next at the Soude-Surmelin system. 1 fere the capture 
occurred long ago; there is no sign of a gorge at the elbow of 
capture. An obsequcnt stream, the Berle, about four miles in 
length, has grown toward the retreating escarpment of the u[)- 
land, and the head of the beheaded stream is now ten miles 
away from where it stood at the time when the(!aj)ture bad just 
taken j>lacc. Having lost its bead rather early in the history of 


202 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


the region, its valley through the upland is not cut to a great 
depth ; it is much shallower than the valley of the Petit Morin, 
which was beheaded at a much later period, when it had become 
nearly as deep as that of the Marne itself. 

It was while studying the French maps at home that I first 
came on this almost ideal example of migrating divides and 
adjustment of streams to structures, but it was not until an ex- 
cursion abroad in 1894 that I Avas able to study it on the ground. 
I then had the gratification of confirming by direct observation, 
as far as the brief time at my disposal would allow, the expecta- 
tions formed from study at a distance. The example of the 
Marne and its side branches therefore still serves me as atypical 
case of adjustments of this kind. 

It is curious to note that another small stream, the upper 
Vaure, fiows toward the marsh of St. Gond, but instead of being 
diverted northward by the Soude to the INIarne, it is diverted 
southward l)y the Superbe, a su])seciuent branch of the Aulje. 
It seems also i)rol)able that this subsequent branch has diverted 
the Maurienne at Pleurs, and thus cut it off from the Grand 
iNIorin, whose head is, like that of the Surmelin, on the upland 
Avest of the escarinnent. 

It is manifest that the terminology here employed Avill he of 
service in simplifying the description of other examples of shift- 
ing divides and river adjustment if they ])Ossess the same sys- 
tematic features as are here so Avell exhibited. That such is the 
case I can confirm from the study of several examples near the 
escarpment of the SAvabian Alp in Wiirtemberg, Avhere the head- 
Avaters of the Xeckar are actively pushing aAvay the divide that 
separates them from the northern tributaries of the upper Dan- 
ube. Although the arrangement of i)arts is not the same as in 
the examjde near Chalons, yet the homologies of the'tAVO regions 
can l>e clearly made out. The same may be said of the rivers of 
central England, Avhich are as a rule Avell adjusted to the val- 
leys betAveen the uplands of the oolite and the chalk. 


(7b be continued.) 


ACROSS THE GULF BY RAIL TO KEY WEST 

By Jefferson B. Browne, 

Collector of Customs of the Port of Key Tlesi 

The traveler aiDproacliing Key West from the gulf of Mexico 
cannot but wonder that upward of twenty thousand jDeople 
should have congregated on a spot so manifestly and completely 
isolated from the rest of the world. After landing and seeing 
how little man has done for the improvement of the island, or 
rather how nature has been marred by man’s mistakes, the vis- 
itor’s wonder changes to absolute amazement that so large a city 
could have grown up Avithout railroad or even wagon-road con- 
nection with the state and country of Avhich it jDolitically forms 
a part. Unless, however, our visitor is an exceedingly superfi- 
cial observer, he will soon begin to realize that it is not so much 
a matter of surprise that the city has attained its present groAvth 
as that, with the natural advantages it possesses, its development 
has not been still greater. He Avill learn that for fifty years Key 
West has held its supremacy as the most poinilous city of the 
state, and that it OAves its prosperity not to any single industry, 
but to the diversity of its sources of revenue, the outgroAvth 
mainly of its geographical location. Its fisheries, its siionge in- 
du.stry, its cigar manufactories, its importance as a coaling station 
and port of call for the commerce of the gulf, its superior advan- 
tages as a naval rendezvous and military station, all have con- 
tributed to the upbuilding of Key Weston thatl)road foundation 
Avhich is the secret of its continued prosperity. The shipl)uilder, 
the sailor, and the sponger, the fisherman, the Avrecker, and the 
stevedore, the cigarmaker and the machinist, the truck farmer 
and the fruit groAver, all find em])loyment in Key \>’est and the 
adjacent islands, and no man Avith a technical knoAvlodge of any 
branch of industr}’, Avith the single important exception of rail- 
roading, ever has to abandon his trade and seek a livelihood in 
another. 

It is not too much to say that upon the comi)letion of the 
Nicaragua canal. Key West Avill become the most imj)ortant city 
in the South. Its harbor, land-locked by reefs and keys, in 


20.1 


204 . 


ACROSS THE GULF BY RAIL TO KEY WEST 


which can float the largest ships of the United States Navy, has 
four entrances. The southwest passage has 33 feet of water on 
the bar, the main ship channel 30 feet, the southeast 22 feet, 
and the northwest 14 feet. A vessel leaving the harbor of Key 
West by the southwest passage would have to sail but 10 miles 
before she could shape her course for her port of destination, 
and through the main ship channel she would have only five 
miles to run l)efore she was at sea. Ships putting into Key West 
for stores or rei)airs neetl go out of their course but 10 miles, 
an advantage possessed by no other port in the United States. 
4'he Government is now engaged in deepening the northwest 
]>assage to 21 feet, and when this is completed ships trading in , 
the gulf will ])ass through the harbor of Key West, coming in at 
one of the main channels and pa.ssing out over the northwest 
l>ar, thus saving 70 miles and avoiding the dangerous reefs around 
the Tortugas islands. 

That Key West will within a short time be connected with the 
mainland by a* railroad, no one who has noted the trend of rail- 
road l)uilding in Florida can doubt. The ultimate object of all 
railroad construction in this state is obviousl}' to reach deep water 
at an extreme southern point, and Ke}'’ West meets the.se re- 
(juirements to the fullest degree. 

The first survey of a railroad route to Key West was made by 
Civil Engineer J. C. Uailey for the International Ocean Tele- 
graph Company as long ago as I860. General W. F. Smith, 
better known as “ Baldy ” Smith, at that time president of the 
company, obtained from the Spanish Government an exclusive 
landing for a calfie on the coast of Cuba for forty years. The 
company had under consideration two plans for reaching Key 
West with its telegraph system. One contemplated a land line 
to Punta Rassa, Florida, and thence b}' cable to Key West; the 
other a continuous land line along the keys. It was proposed 
to drive iron piles into the coral rock in the waters separating 
the keys, and to socket them about 10 feet above high-water 
mark with wooden poles, and iMr Bailey was employed to make 
the surve 3 ^ While engaged in this work he surveyed the route for 
a railroad to Ke}" West, and embodied in his report to the com- 
pany his opinion of its feasibility and cheapness as compared 
with the popular idea of what such a road would cost, ^\'hen 
the Western Union Telegraph Company obtained control of the 
International Ocean Telegraph Company this report came into 
its possession, and it is still on file in its offices in New York. 


ACROSS THE GULF BY RAIL TO KEY WEST 


205 


The distance from Ke}”^ West to the point where a railroad 
would connect with the mainland is about T20 miles, 100 miles 
of which would be on the keys. The construction of a railroad 
from Key West to Bahia Honda, an island 30 miles from the 
former point, presents no difficult problems of engineering and 
would be comparatively inexpensive. When cleared of a few 
inches of vegetable mold and loose stones, the surface of the 
islands is as level and smooth as a ballroom floor. From Key 
West to Bahia Honda the railroad wmuld traverse Boca Chica, 
Saddle Bunch, Sugar Loaf, Cudjoe, Summerland, Torch, and Big 
Pine Key. Between these islands short trestles, ranging from 
one hundred yards to half a mile in length, would be necessary ; 
but some of the passages could be filled with the loose rock which 
is found in immense quantities on all the keys, thus obviating 
the necessity of trestling and making a solid roadbed. Not 
more than seven feet of water has to be crossed until Bahia 
Honda channel is reached. This channel lies between West 
Summerland Key and Bahia Honda, and has an average depth of 
about 20 feet, the distance across it being a little over a quarter 
of a mile. Here it would be necessary to have a drawbridge, as 
the channel is used by the small vessels cruising along the coast. 

The most difficult and expensive i^ortion of the road would be 
from Bahia Honda to Knights Key. Between these two islands 
the distance is about eight miles, but dotted along the route are 
several small keys, surrounded by shallow bars, which extend 
a half-mile or more on all sides. INIolasses Key lies directly on 
the route from Bahia Honda to Knights Key. Between Molasses 
Key and Knights Key the water is deep and bold, and if the 
road was carried in a straight line throughout it would cross 
about half a mile of water varying from 20 feet to 25 feet in 
depth ; but by making a slight detour to the northward and 
tre.stling from Molasses Key to Pigeon Key, and from Pigeon 
Key to Knights Key, deep water would l)e avoided. Between 
the former islands lies the Moser cliannel, named after Lieut. 
Comdr. .Jeff. F. Moser, U. S. N., wlio located it during his Coast 
Survey work in this vicinity several years ago, and four miles 
distant and to the westward of Knights Key is the channel which 
bears its name; over one or both of the.se channels there would 
be another drawbridge. 

After reaching Knights Key there would be very little trestling 
for a distance of 30 miles, until the small keys to the eastward of 

li 


206 


ACROSS THE GULF BY RAIL TO KEY WEST 


Grassy Key were reached. Thence there would be two and one- 
half miles of trestling to Conch Key and the same extent to Long 
Key. After traversing Long Key for four miles the train would 
run over a trestle three and one-half miles long— the water vaiw- 
ing from 10 to 12 feet deep — to Lower Matecumhe, a fertile island 
four miles in length. The next island is Upper Matecumhe, to 
reach which would require a trestle two miles long and a draw- 
bridge over one of the three channels separating these two keys. 
The water between Lower and Upi>er Matecumhe, except in these 
channels, is ver}-^ shallow, the banks at low tide being above the 
surface of the water. The channels are exceedingly narrow, but 
the depth of water in them ranges from 12 feet to 15 feet. Upper 
Matecumhe, Umbrella Key, Plantation Key, and Key Largo are 
sei>arated by very narrow channels, not over 100 yards in width. 
The last named island, the largest and most fertile of the entire 
chain, is 30 miles long, and connected on the north side with the 
mainland. 

By a fortunate provision of nature there is situated about 30 
miles from Key West a large island known as Big Pine Key, 
which is covered with a fine growth of pine suitable for railroad 
ties. All the islands over which the road would run are of coral 
formation. The piles used in the trestling and bridging would 
be of iron, which is easily driven into the soft coral rock. The 
lighthouses along the Florida reef are so constructed, and, stand- 
ing on the edge of the gulf, exposed to the wind and sea, they 
have withstood the storms and cyclones of forty years. Over 
this road there would be no settling or washing of ties nor any 
sinking of tre.stles. Outside of the line of road and running 
parallel with it lies the Florida reef, forming a continuous break- 
water from Fowey Rocks to Key W'est, and protecting the road 
from high seas even in the severest hurricanes. The channels 
between the reef and the keys are not over 12 feet deep, and the 
water in which the trestling would be built would be no rougher 
than that of any of our large rivers. 

The keys are all below the frost line. The mo.st delicate fruits 
and vegetables that were luxuriantly growing upon them during 
the two freezes of last winter were not affected in the slightest 
degree, and tomatoes, pineap{)les, eggplant, and tropical fruits 
were supplied from these islands after the fruit and vegetables in 
all other sections of the state had been destroyed. Owing to lack 
of transportation facilities, however, onl}’ a few of the keys are 
under cultivation ; so the growth of the more delicate vegetables, 


ACROSS THE GULF. BY RAIL TO KEY WEST 


207 


which must find a daily market, is limited to the local demand. 
"With rapid transportation the Florida keys would supply the 
country with fresh vegetables all winter. 

Key West is destined to become the Newport of the South. 
Not since the exceptional year 1886 has the temperature risen 
above 92° F. or fallen below 44° ; in fact, the mean annual maxi- 
mum of the last nine years has been only 90.4°, while the mean 
annual minimum has been 50.5°. In 1891 the minimum was 
53°, in 1892 53°, and in 1893 52°. Soft breezes from the ocean 
blow continuously over the island. The sun shines for 365 da}"s 
in the year and is never obscured for more than a few hours at 
a time, except occasionally in the months of September and 
October, when a West India cyclone is passing up the gulf. There 
are no malaria-breeding pools or streams, and sooner or later the 
thousands of tourists who are restlessly seeking a milder and 
more equable winter climate than the mainland affords will find 
in Key ^^"est their ideal health resort. 

The products of the West Indies and Caribbean sea will be 
ferried across from Cuba in five hours and taken b}^!^ railroad 
for distribution to all parts of the United States. Capital seek- 
ing investment will reap no handsomer return than from a dry 
dock at Key West, into which would come for repairs the trad- 
ing-vessels of the gulf which now have to go hundreds of miles 
out of their way to Newport News, and with the completion of 
the Nicaragua canal Key West would be a port of call for sup- 
plies and repairs for no small part of the shipjnng of the Avorld. 

A railroad to Key West will assuredl}'- be built, ^\’hile the 
fact that it has no exact counterpart among the great achieve- 
ments of modern engineering may make it, like all other great 
enterprises, a subject for a time of incredulity and distrust, it 
presents, as has been shown, no difficulties that are insurmount- 
able. It is, however, a magnificent enterprise and one the exe- 
cution of which will call for the exercise of qualities of the very 
highest order. ^^'llO will be its Cyrus W. Field? The hopes of 
the i)Cople of Key West are centered in Henry INI. Flagler, whose 
financial genius and jmblic spirit have opened up to the tourist 
and health-seeker 300 miles of the beautiful east coast of the 
state. Tlie building of a railroad to Key West would be a fitting 
consummation of Mr. Flagler’s remarkable career, and his name 
would be handed down to jtosterity linked to one of the grandest 
achievements of modern times. 


A GEOGRAPHICAL DESCRIPTION OF THE BRITISH 

ISLANDS 


The April number of the London Geographical Journal con- 
tains an important account by Dr H. R. Mill of his plan for a 
comprehensive Geographical Description of the British Islands. 
He proposes that a memoir shall be prepared for each sheet of 
the Ordnance one-inch maps, giving an index of places; the mean 
elevation of the sheet and of the areas included between suc- 
cessive contour lines ; a hypsographical description ; a physio- 
graphical explanation ; the areas of woodlands, moorlands, and 
cultivated lands ; a description of local iJolitical boundaries and 
of historical events ; and, finally and chiefly, a geographical 
chapter, “showing the relation of the human inhabitants to all 
the foregoing conditions, especially with regard to the sites of 
towns and villages, the distribution of population, the utiliza- 
tion of natural resources, and historical development of indus- 
tries.” A few carefully selected photographs of typical scenery 
should accompany each memoir. Some sketch maps and dia- 
grams may also be included. A bibliography would give the 
titles of all pertinent publications. 

This plan was favorably received at a meeting devoted to its 
]>resentation, and it is to be hoped that the Royal Geographical 
Society will vigorously promote so admirable an undertaking. 
Hitherto concerned chiefly with the exploration of foreign lands, 
a share of its attention 7nay well be turned towards its home 
islands ; for, as was truly remarked at the opening of a recent 
Italian Geographical Congress, however great the glory of dis- 
tant exploration may be, the study of the home country is a 
geographical duty. 

It may, however, be questioned whether the method of issuing 
a memoir for each survey sheet is on the whole advisable for a 
work in which the physiographical and geographical chapters, 
the most important parts of all, ought to be limited by natural 
and not by arbitrary geometrical boundaries. Unity of treat- 
ment would be gained and much repetition would be avoided by 
considering each physiographical area as a whole and not in acci- 
dental fragments as it happens to be divided by the edges of the 


208 


GEOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTION OF THE BRITISH ISLANDS 209 


map sheets. The usefulness of the empirical measurement of 
altitudes on so detailed a scale as here proposed may also be 
questioned. Not contour-line areas, but ph5’’siographical areas, 
should be computed, for it is of little geographical value to in- 
clude under a single arithmetical heading two surfaces of equal 
limiting altitudes, one a steep slope, the other a broad flat. 
Again, the seriousness of the undertaking is hardly recognized 
in the statement that “the physiographical explanation would, 
so far as the geology is concerned, be simply a restatement of the 
‘ physical geography ’ section of the [local] geological survey 
memoir, with such modifications as the modern views of the 
cycle of development of a land surface suggest.” This is as if 
one should say that a petrographical chapter in a new geological 
report should be merel}’’ a modification of a chapter on rocks 
that was written before the methods of modern petrography 
were invented. 

It is stated that the geographical description “ must be the 
work of a trained geographer, who, after studying the maps in 
the light of all the information referred to above, shall have 
made himself familiar with the ground.” There are in Great 
Britain man}^ travelers and explorers, but not many “ trained 
geographers ” in the sense contemplated by Dr Mill, and here 
seems to be a prime difficulty besetting this grand undertaking 
at its outset. But the difficulty may be in great part solved if 
to this crowning chapter we apply what Dr Mill says of a certain 
subordinate section ; “ It would be very suitable as an exercise 
and training for students if any institution existed in this coun- 
try where students could he induced to study geography seri- 
ousl}\” A work of this sort must necessarily be uneven in 
quality. It should exhibit a marked improvement from a fair 
beginning to a much better ending, and when the end comes a 
revision of the earlier parts may he fairly demanded. It is, 
therefore, to be hoi)ed that Dr Mill will not adhere too closely 
to the philosophy that prohihits going into the water until after 
learning how to swim. Let a beginning of the work at least he 
made as a means of training up new geographers, and not merely 
as an occupation fijr geographers already trained. Let the Royal 
Geographical Society announce that it will ])uhlish in hrochurcs 
chapters written according to an approved )»lan and reaching a 
standard satisfactor}' to a committee of editors. An actual be- 
ginning thus made, in the best form at present attainable, will 
give the strongest possible ini[)ulse to the serious study of geog- 


210 GEOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTION OF THE BRITISH ISLANDS 

raphy in the colleges and universities of a country where its 
neglect is now so much deplored. 

To all parts of the work might be applied the remark intro- 
duced by Dr Mill under “ historical information.” It should be 
“ very stringently edited, so as to confine it strictly to those 
features and events of direct geographical importance.” The 
varied standards of articles in the current geographical journals 
indicate so vague an idea of tlie essential quality of geographical 
discipline that this stringent editing will surely be needed in 
every chapter of the proposed memoirs. Care must be taken 
that the volumes do not become so many encyclopedias of sub- 
jects that have not a “ direct geographical importance.” Local 
floras and faunas, for example, which stand in the list of sug- 
gested topics, might easily depart entirely from geography and 
become pure biology. ISIere lists of species have practically no 
geographical bearing. If treated with relation to distribution 
they gain a touch of geographical quality ; but if their distri- 
bution is used to reinforce the appreciation of conditions of 
form, altitude, soil, and climate they become as fully geograph- 
ical as any other means of enlightened description. So with 
the study of population. Numerical tables extracted from 
census reports omit the essential quality of relationship that 
characterizes geogra}>hy proper. True geographical study is 
needed to bring out the meaning of numbers and their depend- 
ence on physiographical conditions. \Te believe that Dr Mill 
appreciates these principles very fully, but there is a possibilit}’- 
that others who will probably cooperate with him are not so 
fully impressed by them, and that a committee of editors as a 
whole might not see the importance of excluding mere tabula- 
tions of species, of population, and similar unrelated records from 
the memoirs, unless the principle of relationship is insisted on 
from the beginning. 

There is no place in the world that is today so favorably situated 
for the undertaking of a work of this kind as are the British Isl- 
ands. Well defined b}'^ insular position, a compact embodiment 
of greatly varied forms, a seat of vast power and wealth, the rest 
of the world may hope to have the model of geographical mono- 
graphs there established. There is, on the whole, no society in 
the world better fitted to encourage and support such an under- 
taking than the Royal Geographical Society of London — estab- 
lished in the world’s center of commerce, the resort of great 
numbers of explorers, travelers, and others of geographic sym- 


THE MEXICAN CENSUS 


211 


pathies, possessing vast resources in its library and its funds. 
Dr Mill, as a secretary of this society, is to be congratulated on 
the surroundings amid which his project takes form, and we 
wish him the greatest success in its execution. 

W. M. Davis. 


THE MEXICAN CENSUS 


The population of Mexico, as ascertained by the census of October 20, 
1895, is officially announced as 12,570,195. The population of the differ- 
ent states, with their respective capitals, is as follows : 

ST.-VTES 


Aguascalientes 103,645 

Campeche 90,458 

Coahuila 235,638 

Colima 55,677 

Chiapas 313,678 

Chihuahua 266,831 

Durangro 294,366 

Guanajuato 1,047,238 

Guerrero 417,621 

Hidalgo 548,0.39 

Jalisco 1,107,863 

Mexico 838,737 

Michoacan 889,795 

Morelos • 1.59,800 

Nuevo Leon 309,607 

Oaxaca 882, .529 

Puebla 979,723 

Queretaro 227,233 

San Lnis Potosi 570,814 

Sinaloa 256,414 

Sonora 191,281 

Tabasco 1.34,794 

Tamanlipas 204,206 

Tlaxcala 166,803 

Veracruz 855,975 

Yucatan 297, .507 

Zacatecas 4.52,720 

Federal District 484,608 

Territory of Tepic 144, .308 

N. Itist. I.ower Calif 7,4.52 

S. Dist. Lower Calif. 34,.S35 


C.4PITAL CITIES 


A guascalientes . ’. 31,619 

Campeche 16,631 

Saltillo 19,654 

Colima 19,305 

Tuxtla Gutierrez 7,882 

Chihuahua 18,521 

Durango 42,165 

Guanajuato 39,3.37 

Chilpancingo 6,204 

Pachuca 52,189 

Guadalajara 83,870 

Toluca 23,648 

Morelia 32,287 

Cuernavaca 8,. 554 

Monterey 56,8.55 

Oaxaca 32,641 

Puebla 91,917 

Queretaro 32,790 

San Lnis Potosi 69,676 

Culiacan 14,205 

Hermosillo 8,376 

San .Tuan Bautista 27,0.36 

Ciudad Victoria 14,575 

Tlaxcala 2,874 

.Talapa 18,173 

IMerida .36,720 

Zacatecas 40,026 

^Mexico .339,935 

Tepic 16,226 

Ensenada <le Todo.s Santos. 1 ,2.59 
La Paz 4,737 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


Hanrlhook of Arctic Discoveries. Columl>ian Knowledge Series. ByA-W. 

Greely, ]jri<radier-General, United States Army ; Chief Signal Otficer. 

Pp. XI -I- 257, with 11 maps. Boston: Roberts Bros. 1890. $1.00. 

Tliis work is a perfect storehouse of arctic facts and figures, from the 
time of brave old Barents and 'Willoughby down to the present. As the 
title indicates, it is a “ handbook ” and not a narrative of arctic discov- 
ery ; but the little volume “ represents more than 50,000 pages of original 
narrative, from which the author has faithfully endeavored to comi^ile 
such data of accomplished results as may subserve the inquiries of a busy 
man who often wishes to know what, when, and where, rather than 
how.” Beginning with a chajder on the scope and value of arctic ex- 
ploration, fifteen succinct chaptei's are devoted to a description of the 
north polar regions and of the successive explorations by which they 
have been made known ; each of these chapters is followed by a special 
bibliography, while a general bibliography forms a final chapter, and the 
volume ends with an excellent index. The little book is a model of con- 
densation and logical arrangement ; it cannot be other than a godsend 
to the student of arctic literature; it shows immense reading and study* 
with jiatience and perseverance beyond the average man ; and its vivid 
and forceful style carries the writer back over years of arctic research 
and hundreds of volumes of arctic literature to his own voyages on icy 
seas. O. W. Melviu.e. 


Crater Ixikc Special Map. Klamath County, Oregon. United States Geo- 
logical Survey. 'Washington, 189fi. 

Rami, McXalhj ib Co.'s Indexed County and Railroad Pocket Map and Ship- 
pers’ Guide. INIa.ssachusetts, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Washington, 
and other states: Quebec. British Columbia, and other provinces of 
Canada. New edition. Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co. 1890. 25 cents. 

Occupations of the Negroes. By Henry Gannett, of the United States Geo- 
logical Survey. Pp. 10, with 12 diagrams. Baltimore: The Trustees 
of the John F. Slater Fund. Occasional Papers. No. 0. 1895. 25 cents. 

The Foreign Commerce and Navigatiem of the United States for the Year endinn 
June 30, 1895. Prepared by the Chief of the Bureau of Statistics, 
Treasury Department. Washington, 1890. Pp. xcix -f .110b -r 83, 
with diagrams. 

S'atistical Abstract of the United States. 1895. Eighteenth number. Pre- 
pared by the Bureau of Statistics, under the direction of the Secretary 
of the Treasury. Pp. xii + 412. Washington, 1896. 

A commendable departure recently made by the Geological Survey is 
well exemplified in the case of the topographic sheet devoted to Crater 
lake, Oregon, which contains three very instructive as well as attractive 
illustrations, together with an interesting description of the lake and its 


212 


GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE 


213 


vicinity from the pen of Mr J. S. Diller, the accomplished geologist to 
whom the country is in no small measure indebted for its scientific 
knowledge of this great natural wonder. 

The new edition of the Kand-McNally state pocket maps cannot fail to 
add to the well-deserved popularity they have so long enjoyed. The 
maps are clearer and handsomer than ever, and the geographical index by 
which they are accompanied is brought down to the date of publication, 
the population according to tlie state census of 1895 being substituted for 
that at the federal census of 1890 in all states in which an interdecennial 
census has been taken. 

Nothing could be more admirable in its way than is Mr Gannett’s pre- 
sentation in the pamphlet recently published by the Trustees of the John 
F. Slater Fund of the facts brought to light by the Eleventh Census con- 
cerning the occupations of the negroes. The treatise is a model of lucid 
condensation, the brief compass of a dozen pages sufficing for a most sat- 
isfactory setting forth of the following important facts and conclusions, 
viz., that the negro is mainly engaged either in agriculture or personal 
service ; that he has in a generation made little progress in manufactures, 
transportation, or trade ; that males are in greater proportion engaged in 
agriculture and females in domestic service ; that the negro has during 
this generation made good progress toward acquiring property, especially 
in the form of homes and farms, and that, in just so far as he has acquired 
possession of real estate, it is safe to say he has become more valuable as 
a citizen. The author’s conclusion that the outlook for the Afro-Ameri- 
can race is very favorable as agriculturists, but that there is little prospect 
that they will become an important factor in manufactures, transporta- 
tion, or commerce seems to be fully warranted by the expei’ience of the 
last thirty years. 

With the possible exception of the Yearbook of the Department of 
Agriculture, of which 500,000 copies are printed annually, there is no 
publication of the United States Government that is consulted more fre- 
quently or for more important purposes than are the Annual Report on 
Commerce and Navigation, published by the Bureau of Statistics of the 
Treasury Department, and the Statistical Abstract, issued annually from 
the same office. These volumes contain the statistics of e\'i)orts and im- 
jjorts, those of immigration and of the currency, and, for a large number 
of important commodities, those of total and per capita consumption and 
of market prices. They an? continually being consulted and quoted by 
politicians of every party and economists and financiers of every school, 
and however conflicting the conclusions j^rofessedly drawn from them, 
the figures themselves are usually accepted without ijiiestion. It is there- 
fore much to be regretted that the value of tlie volumes for 1S!)5 is so 
greatly impaired by the want of care with which the figures for the last 
fi.scal year have been conq)iled. While many of tlie errons are not of 
sufficient magnitude to seriously affect totals or percentages, and are 
therefore of consequence only so far as they help fo di-stroy the conli- 
•lenceof the reader in the I’ontentsof the volumes in general, this cannot 
be said of them all. In several cases they are of more or less far-reach- 
ing effect, while one by no means self-evident error of ten million dol- 


214 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPIITC SOCIETY: 


lars plays havoc in all its relations. The efficient and respected Chief 
of the Bureau, who has in so many different ways added to the scope and 
value of these publications, makes a strong appeal to Congress for addi- 
tional clerical assistance, the number of persons employed in the Bureau 
not luiving been increased during a period of nearly thirty }’ears. Al- 
though the compilation of so enormous a mass of figures involves an 
amount of labor of wdiich the average Congressman has not the slightest 
conception, it is not too much to hope that more adecpiate provision will 
hereafter be made for the work of this most important Bureau. The per- 
fect indifference with which statistical inaccuracies are regarded is truly 
deplorable. Our legislators themselves are <-onstant and serious offenders, 
numerical statements in tlie daily press are rarely to be relied u}wn, and 
even our most pretentious works of reference are not free from errors that 
are absolutely inexcusable. In the article on agi'iculture, for example, in 
one of our best known cyclo])edias, an eminent college professor is re- 
s])onsible for the statement, among others equally erroneous, that the 
United States contains nearly a billion horses, or'over fifty times the num- 
ber it actually does or ever did contain. It is useless to take refuge in the 
plea of non-infallibility. No publication, whether official or non-official, 
can afford to make misstatements that are more than mere elusive, typo- 
graphical errors. J. Hydk. 


PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 
SOCIETY, SESSION i 895-’96 

Sj'iecud Meeting, March 27, Vice-President Ogden in the chair. 

Hon. James II. Eckels, Comptroller of the Currency, addressed the 
Society on the Geographic History of Cnrrency. 

Special Meeting, March 30, 189G. — Fifth IMonday afternoon lecture. ]\Ir 
W J McGee in the chair. Prof Harry Fielding Reid described and illus- 
trated the Glaciers of Alaska, exhibiting many original views by means 
of the lantern. 

Regular Meeting, April 3, Vice-President Gannett in the chair. 

IMr Robert T. Hill read a paper on the Greer County Case. 

Specutl Meeting, April 6, 1896. — Sixth Monday afternoon lecture. Presi- 
dent Hubbard in tbe chair. The President announced that Prof Wm. H. 
Dali, who was to have addressed the Society, was prevented from doing 
so by illness, and that Mr IMarcus Baker had kindly consented to take his 
])lace. IMr Baker then described the voyage from Sitka westward to Attn 
island, with lantern-slide illustrations. 

Special Meeting, April 10, 1896. — President Hubbard in the chair. Mr 
Wm. F. Mannix addressed the Society on Cuba as Seen by a War Corre- 
spondent, with lantern-slide illustrations. 

Special Meeting, April 13, —Seventh Monday afternoon lecture. 
President Hubbard in tbe chair. Prof. I. C. Russell described his visit 


ITS PROCEEDINGS 


215 


to the interior of Alaska, up the Yukon and Porcupine rivers, and across 
the Chilcat pass to Lynn canal, illustrating his address by means of a 
large map and numerous lantern slides. The President announced that 
this was the last of the special afternoon course, and that the subject of 
the Lenten course of 1897 would probably be an illustrated tour across 
the Atlantic and through the Mediterranean. 

Regular Meeting, April 17, 1896. — President Hubbard in the chair. Hon. 
Fred. T. Dubois, U. S. S., read a paper, illustrated by lantern slides, on 
the Geography, Scenery, and Resources of Idaho. 

The following amendments to the by-laws were offered in writing, to 
come up for action at the annual meeting; 

By Vice-President Greely: Article V, Dues. Add after second para- 
graph : “ Suitable rebates may be made, in the discretion of the Board of 
Managers, in the annual dues of members elected in February, March, 
Aju'il, and May.” 

By Secretary Hayden : Add the following new article: “Article IX. 
Seal. The seal of the Society shall consist of a polyconic projection of 
the western hemisphere, from 0° to 180° west from Greenwich, with the 
legend ‘ National Geographic Society ’ above and ‘ Incorporated A. D. 
1888’ below, as in the design herewith.” 

Special Meeting, April 24, 1896. — Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President 
of the Society, delivered the annual address from the chair, taking for 
his subject the Progress of Africa since 1888, with special Reference to 
South Africa and Abyssinia. The addi’ess was accompanied by lantern- 
slide illustrations. 

Special Meeting, May 8, 1896. — President Hubbard in the chair. Mr 
George F. Kunz read a paper, with lantern-slide illustrations, on Geog- 
raphy as Illustrated by Precious Stones. 

Regular Meeting, May 15, 1896. — Eighth Annual Meeting of the Society. 
President Hubbard in the chair. The Secretary and Treasurer i^resented 
their annual reports. Pending amendments to the by-laws were con- 
sidered and adopted as follows : 

Article V, Dues. Add, after second paragraph, “ Suitable rebates may 
be made, in the discretion of the B(jard of Managers, in the annual dues 
of members elected in April and May.” 

Add the following new article : 

“Article IX, Seal. The seal of the Society shall consist of a polyconic 
projection of the western hemisphere, from 0° to 180° west from Green- 
wich, with the legend ‘National Geographic Society’ above and ‘ Incor- 
j^orated A. D. 1888’ below, as in the design herewith.” 

Mr Wm. A. De Caindry and Col. H. C. Rizer were appointe<l a com- 
mittee to audit the Society’s accounts. 

The Presi<lent announced that, in accordance with the re.«olution 
adopte<l by the Society at a meeting held December 27, 1895, the Board 
of Managers had cliussified its members in three groups of six members 
each, as follows: To retire in May, 1890, Mr C. .1. Bell, Hon. C. IV. Dab- 
ney, .fr., Mr G. K. (iilbert, .Mr II. G. Ogden, lion. J. R. Procter, and 
Miss K. R. Scidmore; in May, 1897, Mr Marcus Baker, Mr II. F. Rloiint, 
Lieut. E. Hayden, DrC. Hart .Merriam, Prof. \V. B. Powell, and Mr.I. B. 


216 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


"Wight; in May, 1808, Mr Hy. Gannett, Gen. A. "W. Greely, Hon. Gardi- 
ner G. Hubbard, Mr J. Hyde, ]\Ir "W J McGee, and Mr F. H. Newell. 

The Society then elected the following-named gentlemen members of 
the Board of ^Managers for a term of three years: Mr C. J. Bell, Hon. 
C. AV. Dabney, Jr., Prof. AVm. H. Dali, Dr David T. Day, Mr G. K. Gil- 
bert, and Mr H. G. Ogden. 

Special Meeting, May 16, 1896. — Eighth Annual Excursion and Field 
fleeting. About .300 members and guests went by special train to Char- 
lottesville, A^a., and there visited Monticello (the home of Jefferson) and 
the University of A'irginia. The meeting was held at Alonticello, Presi- 
dent Hubbard in tbe chair, and addresses were made by Alayor Patton, 
of Charlottesville ; President Randolph, of the University ; General A. AA^. 
Greely, Dr Randolph McKim, Prof. AA'" J McGee, Dr G. Brown Goode, 
and other gentlemen. After lunch the party visited the Univ^ersitj' and 
were received by the faculty, returning to AA'^ashington the same evening. 

Elections. — New members have been elected as follows : 

April 3. — Edward Bailey, Alaj. Geo. A^. Boutelle, Mrs L. A. Bradley, 
Henry G. Bryant, Dr John P. Davis, Mrs James AI. Foster, 8. L. Lupton, 
Frank C. Allies, Thos. C. Noyes, Dr Heinrich Ries, Geo. F. Thompson. 

April 17. — Dr S. AA’. Beyer, Lieut. AA’. V. Bronaugh, U. S. N., Lewis 
Clephane, Alaj. H. L. Cranford, Aliss S. B. Hale, Geo. AV. Holdrege, 
Alaj. James AI. Alorgan, Alex. R. Alullowny, T. AV. Neill, Gen. Albert 
Ordway, Horace L. Piper, Aliss Elizabeth AA’right, Henry Xander. 

May 4. — AA’. L. Atkin, E. B. Baldwin, Hiram E. Deats, Dr Johnson 
Eliot, Aliss E. F. Fisher, J. C. Gifford, Chas. Hallock, Rev. P. AI.- AIc- 
Teague, Chas. A. Perkins, Chas. S. Prosser. 

May 15. — James 0. Brooks, Dr AVm. D. Cabell, Aliss Ella Loraine Dor- 
sey, Gen. AI. F. Force, AA’. F. Foster, Airs H. D. Green, F. AA’. Perkins, 
AVm. E. Rogers, Lorin P. Smith, Hon. J. Randolph Tucker, AA’. A. Turk. 

Obitcary. — T he Society has to deplore the deaths of three of its mem- 
bers — Air Charles Addison Alann, Jr., who died Alarch 12; Alajor 
AVilliam Holcomb AA’ebster, the well known and much respected Chief 
Examiner of the Civil Service Commission, who expired suddenl}" on 
Alarch 23, and Judge A’ictor C. Barringer, formerly and for many years 
a distinguished member of the International Court of Appeals at Alex- 
andria, Egypt, whose death occurred Alay 27. 

Officers for 1896-’97. — At a meeting of the Board of Alanagers, held 
June 5, 1896, the following were elected officers of the Society for the 
ensuing year : President, Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard ; A’ice-Presidents, 
Air Alarcus Baker, U. S. Geological Survey ; Prof. AA’m. H. Dali, Smith- 
sonian Institution; Air G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey; Gen. A. 
AA’. Greely, U.S.A., Chief Signal Officer; Dr C. Hart Alerriam, U. S. De- 
partment of Agriculture, and Air Herbert G. Ogden ; Treasurer, Air C. J. 
Bell, President of the American Security and Trust Company ; Recording 
Secretary, Lieut. Everett Hayden, U.S.N. ; Corresponding Secretary, Air 
Henry Gannett, U. S. Geological Survey. 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


NORTH AMERICA 

Newfoundland. The Newfoundland seal fishery has ended in a total 
catch of 196,485 seals, weighing 4,637 tons and of the value of $268,000. 

Mexico. The imports of British cottons into Mexico in 1895 were nearly 
double those of the preceding year, although the Mexican mills were 
favored by protection and also by the low price of silver. 

Canada. The Royal Society of Canada has adopted a memorial to the 
governor-general praying his intervention with the imperial government 
in favor of the unification of nautical, civil, and astronomical time, the 
reform to come into effect on the first day of the new century. 

The Canadian and British governments have come to an agreement 
relative to the subsidization of a fast steamship service between Liverpool, 
or some other English port, and Quebec in summer, and Halifax, Nova 
Scotia, in wipter. The vessels are to be in every respect equal to the best 
steamers running into New York. 

SOUTH AMERICA 

British Guiana. About 20 miles have been completed of the railroad 
that is being constructed from Kartabo point, at the junction of the 
Mazaruni and Cuyuny rivers and opposite the mining town of Bartica, 
to the interior of the country. Another enterprise that will facilitate 
access to the interior is the line that is being built from AVismar, on the 
Demerara river, to a point on the Esequibo above the dangerous falls that 
interfere with the navigation of that stream. Two other lines, both in 
the Barima mining district, are being rapidly pushed to completion. 

EUROPE 

Austria. Large vessels can now sail right up the Danube to Vienna, 
and tlie construction of ship canals connecting the Danube, Oder, and 
Vistula, and also between Budapest and Fiume, is strongly advocated. 

E.ngl.vnd. Tlie total receipts of the Manchester Ship Canal for the first 
four months of the present year showed an increase of more than $55,000 
on those for the corre.sponding period of 1895. 

The president of tlie Royal Geographical Society, Mr C. R. Alark- 
ham, receivetl the honor of knighthood on the recent anniver.sary of 
Queen Victoria’s birthday. 

The Founders’ medal of the Royal Geographical Society has been 
awarded to Sir W. Macgregor for his valuable geograi)hical work in New 
Guinea; the Patrons’ me<lal to Mr St. George R. Littleilale for his expe- 
ditions in Central Asia; the Mun;hison award to Khan Bahadur Yusuf 
Sharif, native Indian surveyor; the (till memorial to Mr A. P. Low for 
explorations in I.«abrador ; the Black grant to Mr .1. Burr Tyrrell for his 


217 


218 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


expeditions to the Barren Grounds of northwest Canada, and the Cuth- 
bert Peck grant to Mr Alfred Sharjje for his many journeys in British 
Central Africa. 

Fk.\xce. According to the recent census, the population of Paris is 
now 2,511,955, an increase of 87,250 in five years. 

The proposed ship canal between the bay of Biscay and the Mediter- 
ranean is pronounced impracticable as a private enterprise, and the com- 
missioners fui'ther report that it offers no such strategic or other advan- 
tages as would justify its construction by the government. 

The activity and influence of the Societe de Geographie de Paris are 
indicated by the fifteen medals and prizes just awarded as follows ; 
1. Great Gold Medal, Prince Henri d’Orleans, Exploration from gulf 
of Tonkin to gulf of Bengal ; 2. Gold Medal, Captain G. Toutee, Ex- 
plorations tlirough Dahomey and on the Niger ; 3. Logerot Medal, Com- 
mander Decoeuer, The Niger Mission; 4. Fournier Medal, L. Romsselet, 
The New Dictionary of Universal Geography ; 5. Malte-Brun Medal, E. 
Chantre, Ethnogi-aphical and archeological investigations in the Caucasus; 

6. JJeicez Medal, F.-J. Clozel, Explorations to the north of Upper Sangha ; 

7. Herbert- Fournel Medal, A. Pavie, Explorations in Indo-China and his 
efforts to extend the power of France in the far East; 8. Bourbonnaud 
Medal, L. Lapicque, Voyage in the Persian gulf and study of the Negritos ; 
9. iJuveyrier Medal, Commander Decazes, Investigations of French Congo 
and surveys north of Abiras; 10. Morot Medal, J, Renaud and C. Rollet 
de L’Jsle, Surveys in the Pai-tsi-long archipelago. Tonkin; 11. Montherot 
Medal, R. de Saint Arroman, Study of geographic enterj)rises of the Min- 
ister of Public Instruction ; 12. Grad Medal, A.-M. Gochet, Works on 
geographic instruction; 13. Huber Medal, F.-A. Forel, Work on lake 
Ixunan and on glaciers ; 14. Jaimen Medal, F. Foureau, Physical observa- 
tions and explorations in the Sahara; 15. Jomard prize, H. Froidevaux, 
Memoirs of travel in French Guya.nne. 

Geu.m.vny. The final report of the census of the German Empire, taken 
December 2, 1895, shows a total population of 52,244,503, an increase of 
nearly three millions within five years. 

The traffic receipts of the North Sea and Baltic Ship Canal have so far 
been vei'y disappointing. A traffic of 7,500,000 tons and receipts of nearly 
5,000,000 marks per annum had been counted on, whereas the first eight 
months’ receipts amounted to only 605,050 marks and rei)resented a tratfic 
of only 976,478 tons. 

It.\i,y. The population of Rome on December 31, 1895, is officially 
reported as 471,801, an increase of 35,621 since December 31, 1891. For 
some unexplained reason no enumeration was made of such of the inhab- 
itants of the city as were without fixed abode, their number being assumed 
to be the same as at the census of 1891, viz., 28,765. The number having 
fixed abodes was 431,881 and the garrison 11,155. 

ASIA 

The French authorities at Chentabun are making a road to Bat- 
tambang and constructing a telegraph line. 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


219 


Upper Bcrma. Active operations looking to the development of the 
mineral wealth of Upper Burma are about to be commenced. A promis- 
ing gold reef has been discovered in the Wuntho district, and coal of ex- 
cellent quality is reported from Lawksawk, in the Southern Shan country. 

. Cni.v.A. An imperial edict directs the constniction of a railway from 
Shanghai to Soochow, 65 miles, at an estimated cost of 2,000,000 taels. 
Shares for one-half the amount are offered to the public at Shanghai. 
Only Chinese stockholders will be admitted, and the government will 
retain control. The government has sanctioned a large increase in the 
production of salt as an additional source of revenue for the rej^ayment of 
the Russian loan. 

Turkestan. The Russian government is said to have decided to take 
another step toward getting within striking distance of Herat. A broad- 
gauge railway is to be built from Merv to a point near the Afghan fron- 
tier, a distance of about 130 miles, and all necessary material is to be 
collected at the far end of the line for the rapid extension of the road to 
Herat, a further distance of only 94 miles, in the event of war. Authority 
has also been given to the Turkestan administration to begin the build- 
ing of a railroad along the Oxus from Charjui, where the river is bridged, 
to Kerki, within a short distance of the Afghan frontier. 

AFRICA 

West Coast. An amicable settlement of the boundaries between Sene- 
gal and Gambia has been arrived at by the French and English commis- 
sioners. 

Ea.st Coast. In the British Colony of Natal there are more than 
51,000 Indian laborers, and the Europeans are clamoi’ing for the prohi- 
bition of further immigration. 

Profe-ssor Elliot’s Expedition. Consul Masterson reports that Prof. 
D. G. Elliot and Messrs Akeley and Dodson arrived at Aden April 14, 
where they procured 70 Somalis, 80 camels, and 20 horses and mules. A 
week later they crossed to Berliera, on the Somali coast. An absence of 
10 months is planned, during which they will cross Somali into Gallaland 
and pass to the south of Juba river. The main object of the journey is 
the collection of mammals, but no effort will be spared to make the 
zoological collection varied and complete. 

Dr S.mith’s Expedition. Interest is added to Elliot’s journey by the 
very successful exiiedition of Dr A. Donaldson Smith, of Pliiladelpliia, 
who left Berbera July 10, 1894, and visited the unexi>lored country of 
Gallaland, between Shebeli river and lake Rudolf. This lake, to tlie 
northeast of Victoria Nvanza, was reacbe<l in July, 1895. After a jour- 
ney of 4,000 miles. Dr Smith arrived at Lamu, on the ea.st coast, north of 
Zanzibar, on October 25, 1895, having lost only six men in sixteen months. 
His most interesting discovery was a race of pigmies, the Dunne, very 
black, flat-nosed, large-lipped, woolly-haired, and averaging only five feet 
in height, the tallest being 5 feet 2 inches. The most valuable results of 
the expedition are the large and varied natural history collections, con- 


220 


MISCELLANEA. 


sisting of 75 mammals ; 300 specimens of plants, 24 new ; 700 specimens 
and 400 varieties of birds, 24 new ; 375 specimens of reptiles, 22 new, and 
7,000 specimens of butterflies, 50 nev/. 

POLAR REGIONS 

The Wbidimnl, of the Jackson-Harmsworth expedition, will leave for 
the Arctic regions early this month. She will carry letters for Dr Nansen, 
on the chance of falling in with him north of Franz Josef Land. 

Prof. Y. Nielsen, of the University of Christiania, states that at the 
last moment Dr Nansen contemplated a change in his route. It was to 
follow the sea of Kara along the east Coast of Nova Zembla and reach 
Franz Josef Land to the north of the 80th parallel, whence he would 
push to the north to seek polar currents. Nielsen believes that this 
course has been followed by Nansen, since he failed to call for the dogs 
and supplies collected for him at the mouth of the Olenek. 


MISCELLANEA 

Pkof. R. S. T.\rr will take a party of Cornell men to Greenland with 
Lieut. Peary this summer. The intention is to spend five or six weeks in 
studying the geology and natural history of a part of the coast north of 
Upernavik. The main object will be the study of glaciation, but the party 
will be so constituted that other subjects will receive full attention. 

A Bronze Memori.vl Bust of Commodore G. W. Melville, Engineer- 
in-Chief of the United States Navy and Chief of the Bureau of Steam 
Engineering, has been presented to the Philadelphia Commander}' of the 
Military Order of the Loyal Legion by a few of the friends and admirers 
of that distinguished engineer and arctic explorer. The bust, which is 
by Ellicott, is pronounced an excellent likeness. 

Albert Perry Brigii.\m has recently published a noteworthy article 
entitled “The New Geography” {Popular Science Monthly, April, 189()), in 
which some of the characteristics of scientific geography are appreciatively 
set forth. The geography of past generations related to earth-forms treated 
as changeless units; the geography of the present generation treats of 
earth-forms as landmarks in teri’estrial evolution, and leads to the con- 
sideration of growth and decay, cause and effect, process and product, 
and finally of the agencies of earth-making; the old geography was mere 
description of dead forms, the new geographic description extends to his- 
tory and cause. The contributions of Powell, Gilbert, Dutton, McGee, 
Davis, and other American students of the new science are recognized, 
Superintendent Powell’s activity in disseminating sound method is com- 
mended, and the activity of the National Geographic Society in discovery 
and in inculcating modern ideas is noticed. The article is of interest as 
an indication of progress in the development and diffusion of scientific 
geography, and its appearance in a journal not given to the recognition 
of modern earth science is especially welcome. 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 



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NATIONAL GEOGkAPlIIC MAGAZINE 




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Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. S. N. 

Dr. Francis Brown, Union Tlieol. Seminary. 

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Hon. William E. Curtis, e.x-Director of the 
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Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
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Dr. Win. H. Dali, Smith.sonian Institution. 

Dr. George David.son, Pre.sident of the Geo- 
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i\lr. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological Snrve3\ 

i\Ir. Win. M. Davis, Professor of Physical Geog- ■ 
raphy in Harvard Universit3\ 

Dr. David T. Da\', Chief of the Div. of Mining 
Statistics and Technology', U. S- Geol. Siir 

Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

H'lii. John W. Foster, ex-,Secretary of State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Geographer, U. S. 
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Mr. G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief Signal 
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Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
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Lieut. liveretl Hay'deii, U. S. N., Secretary' of 
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air. Robert T. Hill, U. S. Geological vSurvey'. 

Mr. Win. H. Holmes. Dir. of the Dept, of An- 
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Dr. Emil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. Sheldon Jackson. U. S. Coinmi.ssioner of 
I'Mncation for Ahuska. 


Mr. Willard D. Johnson, U. S. Geol. Survey. 
Mr. Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 

Mr. George Kennan. 

Prof. William Libbey', Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 
Prof. Py. McClure, University of Oregon. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
nology. 

air. John E. aicGrath, U. S. Coast Survey'. 
Admiral R. W. aieade', U. ,S. N, 

Dr. T. C. aiendenhall. President of the Poly'- 
technic Institute, Worcester, aia.ss. 

Dr. C. Hart aierriam. Ornithologist and Mam- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 
Hon. John H. aiitchell, U. S. S. 

Prof. W. L- aioore. Chief of Weather Bureau, 
air. Frederick H. Newell, Chief Hydrographer 
of the U. S. Geological Survey, 
air. Herbert (i. Ogden, U. S. Coast Survey'. 
Lieut. Robert E. Peary, U. S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. S. 

Mr. William H. Pickering, Professor of Astron- 
omy' in Harvard University', 
aiajor John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of American Ethnology. 

Prof. W. B. Powell, Superintendent of Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Hon. John R. Procter, President of the U. S. 

Civil .Service Commission, 
air. Israel C. Russell, Professor of Geology in 
the University of aiichigan. 

Dr. N. vS. vShaler, Professor of Geology in Har- 
vard University. 

Commander Charles D. Sigsbee, Hydrographer 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Navy' Dept, 
aiiss Plliza Ruhamah .Scidmore. 

Commander Z. L- Tanner, U. S. N. 
air. Frank Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U. S. 

Geological .Survey, 
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air. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


PRINCIPAL CONTENTS OF RECENT NUMBERS. 

JANUARY. — Rus.sia in Europe, with map, Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard ; The Arctic Cruise 
of the U. S. Revenue Cutter “Bear,” with illustrations. Dr. .Sheldon Jack.son ; The 
Scope and Value of Arctic E.xploration, Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A.' 

FEBRUARY. — Venezuela: Her Government, People, and Boundary', with map and ilhustra- 
tions, William IL Curtis; The Panama Canal Route, with illustrations, Prof. Robert!'. 
Hill ; The Tehuantepec .Ship Railway, with map.s, li. L. Corthell, C. IC., LL- D. ; The 
Present .State of the Nicaragua Canal, Gen. A. W. Greely: I*yX])lorations by the Bureau 
of .American Ivthnology, W J McGee. ^-Ilso map of the Orinoco valley, stunvin^: territory 
(trained by that tvatencay and its bearing; on the V'encznelan Boundary Question. 

MARCH. — The So-Calleil “ Jeannette Relics,” Prof. Wm. H. D.ill ; Nansen’s Polar hyXpedi- 
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Survey and Snbilivision of Indian 'I'enilory, with map and illnstratitm, Henry Gannett; 
“ I'ree Burghs” in the ITnited .States, James H. Blodgett. .Uso chart, p) x yo inches, 
slunviny Submarine Teteyraph Cables of the World and I'rineipal Land Lines. P'ull- 
paye portraits of Dr. Nansen and B> of Wm. If nail. 

APRIL. — Seriliind, with maj) and illustration, W J McGee ami Willard I). Johnson ; The 
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Alaska, Ivli/.a Rnhanndi Scidmore ; Hydrography in the Unite<l States, b'rederick H. 
Newell; Recent Triangnlatioii in the Cascailes, .S. ,S. Gannett; The Altitude of Mt. 
.Afl.ims, Washington, b'dgar McClure. 

MAY. — .Africa since iSSS, with special reference to South Africa ;iml .Abyssinia, with map, 
Hon. (i.irdiner G. Hnbbanl ; I'umlamental Geographic Relation of the Three .Americas, 
with maj). Prof. Robert!'. Ilill ; I'lie K.tnsas River, .Arthur P. Davis. c/Ao portrait of 
lion. Oardiner (/. //uhbard, /’resident of the National Geoyraphic Society. 

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OF 







will contain among other important articles 


A JOURNEY IN ECUADOR, 


By mark B. KERR, C. E. ; _ 


GEOGRAPHIC NAMES, 




By HENRY GANNETT, 

Chief Geographer of the U. S. Geological Survey and President of the 
U. S. Board on Geographic Names ; 


• AND THE CONCLUSION OF THE ARTICLE BY 


PROFESSOR W. M. DAVIS 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE. 


JVDD & DETWEILER, PRINTERS, WASHINGTON, D. C- 




JULY, 1896 


No. 7 



\THLX 


The 


7'^ _ 








V'S'T 


AN ILLUSTRATED 


Honorary Editor: JOHN HYDE 


A. W. QREEL 


Honjorary Associate Editors j 

^3ElQ ELIZA^ RUHAmAH SCIDMOI^E 

' Ji- 


. CONTENTS ; i / i 

I PAGE 

THE WORK pF THE U., S. BOA^ ON GEOTQI^APHIC NAMES. 

' HENRY GANNETT. 221 

t THE SEINEr l^PE MED^E. ANp THE MOSELLE, II. . / 

1 T^(itti"maps. william m/dAVIS. 228 

\ A JXJf^RNEY IN\BCUADOR^ MARK B. KERR, C. E 238 

With map and illustrations. 

THE ABERRATION OF SOUND AS ILLUSTRATED BY THE BERKE- 
LEY POWDER EXPLOSION. With diagrams. 

ROBERT H. CHAPMAN. 246 
MINERAL PRODUCTION IN THE UNITED STATES. 250 

^ Geographic Notes, p. 251; Miscellanea, p. 252. 


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NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXV 



See page 242. 


HANDIWORK OF THE CAYAPAS INDIANS, ECUADOR 
From an Original Photograph by Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 



THE 



Yol. VII JULY, 1896 No. 7 


THE WORK OF THE UNITED STATES BOARD ON 
GEOGRAPHIC NAMES 

By Henry Gannett, 

Chairman of the Board and Chiif Geographer of t]>e U. S. Geological Survey 
and of the Tenth and Eleventh Censuses 

This board was originally constituted, in the early part of 
1890, as a voluntaiy association of officers of various depart- 
ments of the government for the purpose of securing uniformit}" 
in the official spelling of geographic names. It was the result, 
in the main, of the efforts of Dr T. C. Mendenhall, then Super- 
intendent of the U. S. Coast and Geodetic Surve}g who was 
chosen its first chairman. It was given standing and authority 
by an executive order of September 4, 1890, which reads as 
follows : 

“A.s it is desirable tliat uniform usa^e in regard to geogra])hic nomen- 
clature and orthography oldain throughout the e.xecntive de])artments 
of the government, and i)articnlarly upon the maps and charts i.ssned l)y 
the various de[)artments and bureaus, I hereby constitute a Loard on 
Geographic Names and designate the following persons, who have here- 
tof(we cooperated for a similar purpose under the authority of the several 
departments, l>ureaus, and institutions with which thej' are connected, 
as members of said board. ... To this board shall be referred all 
unsettled (piestious c(jncerning geographic names which arise in the de- 
partments, and the decisions of the board are to be accepted by these 
<lei)artments as the standard authority in such matters.” . . . 

The board now consists of representatives of the following 
departments ami bureaus: State, M'ar, and Navy departments, 
Light-House Board, Coast and Geodetic Survey, Geological Sur- 
vey, General Land Office, Rost Odice De[)artinent, and Smith- 
sonian Institution. 


15 


]VORK OF THE BOARD OX GEOGRAPHIC NAMES 


222 

During the five years or more of its existence the board has 
held 48 meetings and has decided 2,835 cases. Its modus ope- 
raudiis simple and direct. The cases of dis]nited nomenclature 
which reach it are referred at once to an executive committee 
consisting at present of the representatives of the Geological 
Surve.y, Navy Department, and Coast and Geodetic Survey. An 
investigation of each case is made by this executive committee, 
which reports it, with recommendations, to the board, which 
makes a final decision. For such decision a majority of the 
entire board is necessaiy. It not infrequently happens, there- 
fore, that it is only by a unanimous vote of those present at a 
meeting that definite action can be taken. 

Geographic names ma}" be broadh’' distinguished into two 
classes : tliose which are established b}'- usage, commonly local 
usage, and those which are not so established. In regard to the 
former class, the primary })rincii>le which controls the decisions 
of the board is that local usage ouglit to prevail. What the 
people call themselves and what they call tlie natural features 
lying within their jurisdiction should, unless there is good 
reason to the contrary, be the names thereof. That tliis is just 
and proj)er surely goes without sa}dng. In general, every man 
has a right to insist that other people call him by the name 
which he selects and accept that spelling of his name which he 
chooses to adopt. The rights which a man has over his own 
name, a community has over its own name and over the names 
of all natural features hung within its jurisdiction. Lest it 
should appear that I am dwelling too much on this aspect of 
the case and arguing a self-evident proi>osition, let me quote 
from an article recently published in Justus Perthes’ Geograph- 
ische Mittheilungen, which will show that there are men, and 
men of eminence, too, who do not accept this principle. 

“Tlie practical Americans have had since 1890 a Bureau of Geographic 
Names. . . . The establishment of this Bureau on Geograpliic Names 

and its first decisions were referred to in our last report. We gave a 
hearty greeting to the new creation, and added to the greeting a few sug- 
gestions; but these have not been considered. Nay, more, tlie later de- 
cisions of the board, about 700 in number, relating to geographic names 
at home and abroad, correspond still less to the most reasonable expecta- 
tions. We miss the principle that the original form of the name, the 
meaning and etymology of the name, the motive for naming, is to be con- 
sidered, and considered first and foremost. We miss the scientific spirit, 
which, instead of cleaving to the form, unlocks the intrinsic meaning, 
and accordingly we miss in the works of a government board of names 
all evidence of acquaintance with toponymic literature.” 


WORK OF THE BOARD ON GEOGRAPHIC NAMES 223 


Summarizing a discussion which took place before the National 
Geographic Society on the subject of geographic names, the same 
author says : 

“Only the last named among the four speakers has a word to say in 
behalf of the original forms of the nomenclature introduced by discovery 
and explorers, or received from the Indians; but his chain pionshi]) is timid 
and surrounded by wide reservation. Nowhere do we find the principle 
laid down that the original forms of names, esiiecially Indian names, 
which are so true to life, are to be preserved as much as possible. A 
board of names hasmo easy task. It has not merely to give ‘decisions,’ 
but also to base these decisions on thorough study, and to inform the 
public, so far as necessary, of the grounds on which they are made. AVe 
wish to know from what variations the form selected has been picked out ; 
and this statement will serve to show the amount of knowledge of litera- 
ture possessed and the scientific principle followed, and will itself win for 
the decision the confidence of the interested circles. Only this method 
turns out solid work ; any other procedure merely replaces private caprice 
by otficial caprice. This official caprice is able to turn a ‘ Golfo Triste ’ 
(sad bay) into a ‘ Gulf of Triste,’ thus manufacturing a personal name or 
place name, Triste, alter which the bay must have been named. It is 
well known that this feature is the arm of the sea between the Orinoco 
and Trinidad, to which the Dragon’s gorge forms the northern entrance, 
a passage which was deserted and feared even in the time of Columbus, 
because ships, driving with spread sails under brisk west wind against the 
mighty current of the Orinoco, are exposed to danger. The above-men- 
tioned decision of the board of names has masked the physical fact and 
formally falsified an expressive geographic name.” 

With regard to tliis ca.se, it may be stated that the hoard has 
made no decision whatever. It has not come before it. 

“ In the United States and elsewhere there are undoubtedly an infinity 
of names and places of obscure origin, and for which a decision has to be 
made without giving i-easons. Be it so. We recognize the necessity 
where it exists ; but just as positively must we demand that the decision 
be made on scientific grounds whenever possible.” 

Dr Egli, the writer of this article, is well known as one of the 
leading geographers of Europe and one who has given mucli 
attentifm to this subject of geographic names. It seems to me 
clear, however, and in that view I know that I share the opinion 
of the other members of the hoard, that he is radically wrong in 
the views he here presents, lie states the exact fact when he 
says that “We mi.ss tlie prineii>le that the original form of the 
name, the meaning, tlie etymology of tlie name, the motive for 
naming, is to he considered, and considered /f'rs^ ixnd foroiirntP 

It is true that the hoard attaches little importance to these 


224 


^yORK OF THE BOARD ON GEOGRAPHIC NAMES 


matters. On the contrary, its fundamental principle, as before 
stated — a principle which has controlled many hundreds of its 
decisions — is that local usage, the prevalent usage of the people 
living in the neighborhood, should be followed. By this it is 
not meant that local usage has absolutely controlled in all cases. 
Departures have been made whenever, for other reasons, such a 
course seemed wise, but this principle has controlled the de- 
cisions of the board in nine cases out of ten. I have already 
touched on its validity. Concerning its expediency, I may say 
that unless the decisions of the board are adopted by the peoi)le 
and generally followed its work will be a hiilure. It was con- 
stituted not to restore corrui)ted forms to so-called pure forms, 
but to secure uniformity of usage. There is not force enough 
in any government, at least not enough in the government of 
the United States, to make the people do what they do not Avish 
to do. To fly in the face of the community is like attempting 
to dam uj) a river and force it to flow up hill. 

To adopt as the “ first and foremost ” j)rinciple the one formu- 
lated by Dr Egli, that the original forms of names be restored, 
Avould lead to some startling results, results Avbicb he surely does 
not full}" appreciate. Geograi)hic names in the United States 
have been modified, changed, distorted, corrupted, if you will, 
to an astonishing extent. To throAV aside these corrupted but 
Avell established names and replace them by old and forgotten 
forms would involve wholesale changes, such as would find no 
following among the peoi)le of the United States. The name 
Avhich was accepted fifty or a hundred years ago is not the name 
in use at i)resent; today the people accei>t something else. 

An example of corru[)tion is seen in the name Bol)ruly, ap- 
plied to a creek in Missouri. The original Avill. of course, be 
recognized as Bois Brule. Again, Rum river, Wisconsin, AA'as 
originally the St. Esprit, which, translated, became S[)irit river, 
and thence, by some pundit, rendered in its ])resent form. For 
a Avhole century Wisconsin Avas spelled Ouisconsing. Would 
there be any right or propriety in reverting to that spelling and 
requiring the citizens of the Badger State to adopt it in place of 
the present form ? Shall Ave attempt to revive the nasne Illinois 
or Illinovacks in place of Michigan for one of the Great Lakes. 
Ouabash for Wabash, and apjjly it to the Ohio river, or call it 
La Belle Riviere? Should Ave substitute Kichi Gummi, Grand 
Lac, Tracy, Conde, or Algona for Lake Superior, and lhankton 
for Yankton? Shall Ave call the Mississippi the St. Francis, the 


WORK OF THE B6ARD ON GEOORA PHIC NAMES 225 


Colbert, the Conception, or the St. Louis ; shall we change Mis- 
souri into Missouries or St. Phillip, and Iowa into loway? 

M"e might go on and quote thousands of names that have 
been changed to a greater or less extent, but these few will 
suffice to illustrate the matter. Examination of old maps of 
the United States shows that a majority of the geographic names 
now in use have been changed since the}^ were first applied ; 
consequently it Avould be utterl}'’ impracticable to ignore the 
forms to which the people are now accustomed, even if there 
were no impropriety in so doing. In short, it is impossible, 
even were it desirable, to restore the original forms of names. 

The principle above enunciated is a far-reaching one, and it 
will be well, before entering upon a discussion of the exceptions 
which the board makes to it, to follow it and see to what it leads 
us. The names of many features in foreign countries have from 
time out of mind been known to English-speaking i)eople by 
names other than those ajiplied by their inhabitants. The Ger- 
mans call their country Deutschland, the Italians call theii’s 
Italia, the Spaniards Espana. The citizens of certain places in 
Italia call their cities Livorno, Roma, Venecia, but we call them 
1)3’- other names in a way that is utterly unwarranted. Eveiy 
American resents having a Frenchman call our countiy Les Etats 
Unis, and properly, for it is not its name. There is no more 
sense in translating a geographic name than a person’s name. 
A name is not a common noun, that it should be translated. The 
time is ap})arentl_y not ripe for ado})ting the home names of all 
foreign geographic features, but, speaking for myself, I have no 
doubt that it will soon be feasible to institute this reform. In- 
deed, in almost every individual case of this sort that has been 
lu'ought before the board the decision has been rendered in favor 
of the home name. 

The universal adoj)tion of this principle would, however, lead to 
many inconsistencies. For instance, in many cases what is plainly 
the same name a]»pears in different ))arts of the United States 
as a designation of different features, with different spellings. 
In such cases should these different spellings be unified? The 
tendency of the board (hnibtless is in that direction, l)iit in nianv 
cases they not old}' rim against strong local usage but against 
legal anthorit}' as well. Wichita, Washita, and Ouachita are the 
same word ; so with \\'\’andot, Wyandotte, and (Jnyandot. All 
are familiar with the name Allegheny, Iimiji, (iin/, applied to 
counties in New York, I’ennsylyania, \firgiida. West \'irginia, 


226 TI’Oi?A" OF THE BOARD ON GEOGRAPHIC NAMES 


and North Carolina, and to mountain ranges and a river. As a 
county name it is spelled in three different forms, each of which 
is fortified by legislative acts, legal documents, and no end of 
local usage. It is desirable to make the spelling uniform ; but 
can it be done? In such a case the board is between tlie devil 
and the deep sea. Consistency in following local usage pro- 
duces inconsistency in orthography. In some cases of this sort, 
where the board was of the opinion that local usage could be 
overcome, it has adopted a uniform spelling, but in other cases 
it has refrained from making decisions. 

In the matter of geographic names, as in everything else, de- 
velopment is constantly going on; names are continually chang- 
ing, being modified in some cases slightl}% in other cases radicall,v. 
Is it best that this develojnnent should be suffered to go on 
blindly, as development has proceeded throughout the world 
in times past, or will it be more economical and will the results 
be more satisfactoiw and be attained at less cost if it be guided 
intelligently? Surely no one will hesitate to admit that the 
latter is the better condition. Recognizing this course of de- 
velopment in geograj)hic names, the board has studied it with 
a view to ascertaining its trend, of discovering what changes 
are going on, and what their result is likely to be in the future, 
and, acting upon the knowledge thus acquired, it has endeav- 
ored to guide the course of development into the best channels, 
so as to ju'oduce good results from it as speedily as i)racticable. 
The most marked direction in which development is proceeding 
is that of simplification. Useless letters are being dropped, 
hyphens are being omitted ; appendages to names, such as the 
word city, town, court-house, cross-roads, etc., are one after an- 
other l)eing dro})]5ed. The possessive form of names is being 
given up. Life is too short to expend it in writing these useless 
words and letters. Names consisting of more than one word 
are b^ng run together into one word. In these and many 
other ways the course of develoj:)ment is toward simplification 
and abbreviation. Of these changes the hoard heartily approves 
and it is going as fast and as far in the direction of furthering 
them as it believes the public will support it. To go faster or to 
go further at the ]n’esent time would be to discredit itself, and 
this the board prefers not to do. Another tendency in develop- 
ment is towar<l uniformity in spelling. Certain names ending 
in hurg were formerly spelled burgh, others burg, necessitating 
constant reference to gazetteers in order to learn whether the 


WORK OF THE BOARD ON GEOGRAPHIC NAMES 


227 


name had a final hov not. The board at one stroke relieved the 
American public of this necessity b}'’ striking off the h in every 
case. The same thing was done with the termination ugh of 
borough and for the same purpose. Similarl}'- the word centre is 
now uniformly spelled center wherever it appears as a part of a 
geographic name. 

There is one other class of names to be considered, that is, 
names in remote, unsettled parts of the country, where there is 
no local usage. These are mainly of Indian origin, and they 
may be said to be still in an unsettled state, like the country in 
which they are found. How do we obtain Indian names ? The 
spelling given to an Indian name represents the way in which 
some white man understood some Indian to pronounce it, and 
every one knows that in such a case there will be just as many 
different spellings of an Indian name as there are white men to 
hear it and Indians to pronounce it. From our Northwest we 
could, if space permitted, give hundreds of such names, each of 
them with a dozen or perhaps twenty different versions, and each 
version just as correct as any other. In such cases the board 
selects from among the different versions the one which seems 
to represent the sound the most clearly and most simply. 

Early in the life of the board a long list of Alaskan names was 
sui)initted to it for decision. These names were referred by the 
board to some half-dozen gentlemen, all of whom were known as 
Alaskan geographers, and the subsequent decisions were based 
upon the weight of evidence submitted by these specialists. Of 
course, the decisions did not in all cases please all persons ac- 
quainted with Alaskan names. 

In the matter of names in unsettled countries under foreign 
jurisdiction, the ])olicy of the board has been to accept the spell- 
ing of the nation having jurisdiction there. 

The work involved in making these decisions is in the main 
simple in character. Although much of it involves investiga- 
tion, it is common every-day investigation, consisting mainly in 
finding out what people call themselves. The matters with 
which the boanl are concerned arc not, as a rule, scientific mat- 
ters. They are sim[)ly matters of fact or judgment. The board 
is often criticised for inc(msistency in its decisions; with having 
decided one way in one case and a dill'erent way in another case 
whicli appears to l»e (piih! similar. I think tlu^ board is (luito 
read}’’ to plead guilty to the charge of inconsistency, but with 
extenuating circumstances, since c<jnsistency in certain matters 
involves inconsistency in others. 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 

By MTlliam M. Davis 
Professor of Physical Geography in Harvard University 

II 

Dhersion of the upper Moselle from the Meuse . — After this long 
digression let us now return to the case of the Meuse and see 
whether indications can he found that any of its branches have 
been diverted to the basins of the Seine or of the Moselle. The 
first example to he mentioned is found in the neigld^orhood of 
Toul, and for simplicity of description I shall take the liberty 
of changing the names of tlie streams in this region in accord- 
ance with the adjoining diagram, the actual names being given 
in thin-lined letters, the assumed names in heavy-lined letters. 
Tlie case may then l)e brietly stated as follows : The Toul (upper 
Moselle; once tlcnved through a meandering valley and joined 
the Meuse at the little village of Pagny-sur-Meuse. The mean- 
dering valley trenches an u|)land of middle oolite strata, Imt in 
the course of time the Po!npe\'. a branch of the Moselle, pushed 
away the divide at its head, tap))ed the Toul where the city 
of that name now stands, and diverted it from the ^leuse to the 
Moselle. * 

The first fact to note is that the abandoned valley between 
Toul and Pagny swings on large curved meanders, after the 

* My attention was first called to this example bj’ my kind friend, M. Emm. de Mar- 
Kcrie, wtio was so good as to refer me to the writings of several French autliors by 
wliom it had t)een described more or less fully' and to wliose essays I thereupon re- 
ferred either in the original or in some citation. The earliest writer to make mention 
of this change in the course of the Toul seems to have been Boblay’e, (i) who in 1829 
reported that he found pebbles in the valley of the Meuse unlike the rocks of its upper 
Vjasin. but like those of the upper valley of the Toul in the Vosges mountains. Buvig- 
nier (2) gave a fuller account of the same facts in 1852 and came to the same conclu- 
sion. Housson(3) wrote on the same subject in 1804, but I have not seen his article. 
The latest account of the case is by Godron (4) in 1876. .All these authors recognize 
what may be called the geological evidence of the change, that is, the occurrence of 
pebbles from the Toul in the valley of the Meuse ; but as far as I have read, they did 
not give particular care to the geographical features of the case. It is to these, there- 
fore, that special attention is here called. 

(1) -Mem. sur la formation jurassique dans le nord de la France. .Ann .Sci. Nat., 1829. 

(2) Statistique geol. et min. du department de la .Meuse, Paris, 1852. 

(:$) Origine de respO»ce humaine dans les environs de Toul. Pont-a Mousson, 1804. 

(4) Ann. Club \lpin franyais, xiii, 1870, 442-457. 


228 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


229 


fashion often assumed by the valleys of large rivers, but never 
imitated by valley’s of small streams. It is true that the valleys 
of small streams may in the course of time become compara- 
tively wide, but the}^ 
can never develop 
S3’stematically curv- 
ing meanders of 
large radius with 
steep sloping bluffs 
on the ‘outside of 
the curves and long 
sloi»ing spurs on the 
inside of the curves. 

The form of the val- 
ley from Toul to 
Pagny, therefore, at 
once suggests not 
onlv that a stream 
once passed through 
it, but also that the stream was a large one. 

In the second ]>lace, on looking more closely at the topo- 
gra])hic details in the neighborhood of Toul, it is seen that we 

have here a well 
developed elbow 
of c a p t u r e — a 
shar{) l)cnd in the 
river course, inde- 
pendent of local 
rock structure, 
'file Toul makes 
a sharp turn from 
the direction of 
its upper course 
and swings off 
along the course 
f)f the Pompcv to 
the .Moselle, 'flie 
Pompev was once 
inerelv one of 
m a n v s in a 1 1 
branches of the Moselle, of which the neighboring .Ache mav be 
taken as the tvpe; but in consetiuence of adding the large vol- 




230 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


lime of tlie Toul to the formerly small volume of the Pompe}% 
tlie valley has been distinctly deepened both down and iii)- 
stream from the elbow of capture below the former level of the 
streams and now exhibits the steep-sided trench characteristic 
of recent captures. Not only the diverted Toul but several of 
its l)ranches above the elbow of capture have intrenched them- 
selves beneath the "eneral level of the open valley-plain of lower 
oblite strata on which they formerly flowed. On restoring the 
surface of this old valle}' floor by filling up the trenches which 
now dissect it, it may he seen to slope at such a grade as would 
lead it to the floor of the meandering valley on the wa}" to the 
Meuse. Immediately after the division of the Toul we may 
imagine that only a small stream — the Pagny — fed by the drain- 
age from the valley slopes, was left to follow the meandering 
valley to Meuse. This would be the diminished, beheaded 
stream of our terminology. But in conseciuence of the develop- 
ment of the dee() trench at the elbow of capture and the accom- 
})anving growth of the obsequent stream — the Ingressin — the 
l)eheaded Pagny has been still further shortened and is now not 
more than two and one-half miles in length.* 

The Pacpiy and the Ingressin. — I^et me here turn a moment from 
the main subject to consider some special features of the me- 
andering valley and its })resent occui>ants, the Pagny and the 
Ingressin. In the first place, midway in the valley, at the village 
of Foug, there is a little stream coming in from the Bois Romont 
on the north. The topograjdiic details of the district give good 
reason for thinking that this little stream used to join the valley 
at Lay-St.-Remy on the next meander to the west, and thus we 
have here a repetition of an accident of the Ste. Austreberte 
type. Mdien the vigorous Toul was running through this valley 
and widening its meander belt it must have pushed its swinging 
current so vigorously against the outer side of its curves that it 
cut through the ridge separating the Foug meander from the 
little stream on the north, and thus changed the mouth of its 
own tributary from a lower to an upi)er meander. .This mai" be 
added to the evidence indicating the former passage of a large 
river through the meandering valle^^ 

Next as to the obsequent Ingressin, whose head is at least si.x 

*Tlie following altitudes are significant : 

Junction of the Meurtlie and the Moselle at Pompey, about 190 m. 

Elbow of capture at Toul, 204 m. 

Old valley floor at elbow of capture, about 255 m. 

Divide between Ingressin and Pagny, 265 m. 

Junction of the Pagny and the Meuse, 245 m. 


THE SEINE, THE HEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


231 


miles from the elbow. The comparative narrowness of the trench 
both above and below the elbow of capture b}'- Toul would not 
lead us to expect an obsequent stream of much length, and I 
therefore suggest the following explanation of the rather surpris- 
ing length of the Ingressin. A little southwest of Foug is the 
narrowest part of the old valley, its narrowness here being due 
to the greater resistance of the middle Oolite, which form the 
highland through which it is cut. From these steep slopes it 
appears that a significant amount of waste has crept down into 
the valley trough, obstructing it more or less and producing a 
swamp of small dimensions. The beheaded Pagny seems to 
have been unable to hold its course through this obstruction. 
It probably accumulated for a time in a shallow lake above the 
obstruction, until on overflowing into the gorge at the elbow this 
j)art of its course reversed its direction of flow, and thus gave 
rise to an obsequent stream of a somewhat aberrant type which 
is now called the Ingressin. 

All this, however, only by way of suggestion. Further study 
of the geographical aspects of the country is necessary before 
this sugge.stion deserves acceptance. There need, however, be 
no doubt on the general problem concerning the diversion of the 
Toul from the Meuse to the Moselle, and to my mind the case 
would be perfectly satisfactory if no pebbles from the Vosges 
had ever been found in the valley of the Meuse below Pagny. 
The dimensions of the meandering valle\% the systematic form 
of its bluffs and curves, the gorge above and below the elbow of 
capture at Toul, the relation of the old valley plain in which 
the gorge was cut to the floor of the meandering valley that 
leads through the upland, and the accident that hapj)ened to the 
little side stream at Foug, all combine into so S3^stematic an 
arrangement of parts as to leave no doubt that an explanation 
which can account for them by a single and simifle process is 
their true explanation. 

The (liniinished Meuse . — Looking now again at the Meuse l)y 
CommercN' we must recognize it as a river whose volume has been 
diminished by the diversion of an important tributary to another 
river .sj'stem. Its volume having diminished, it is unable now 
to accommodate itself to the large curves of its vallcv and must 
instead advance in an uncertain course as it staggers along on the 
valley floor. Not 011I3' so; hiiving lost volume, it seems unable 
to maintain so gentle a slope as it had assumed when its volume 
was larger, for its tlood-|)lain now has every appearance of hav- 


232 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


ing filled up the former valley-trough to a moderate depth. It 
therefore gives us au illustration of a river which has changed 
its action from degrading its slope when its volume was large to 
aggrading its slope now that its volume is small. 

\\diat the Meuse has lost the Moselle has gained, and the con- 
siderable addition that the Toul has given to its volume has 
undoubtedly confirmed its habit of swinging boldlv around the 
meanders of its lower valle}", even to the point of cutting almost 
or quite through the necks of its meander spurs. 

The Aire and the Bar . — Let us next look at tlie case of the Aire. 
Tins stream was once an affluent of the Meuse on the we.stern 
side, of its basin. but it has been diverted to swell the volume of 

tlie Seine. The elbow of cap- 
ture in this case lies about two 
miles east of Grand Pre. The 
Aire coming from the southeast 
here makes a sharp turn west- 
ward through the ridge of lower 
Cretaceous strata that bears the 
forest of Argonne and thus joins 
the Aisne. In direct continua- 
tion of the course of the Aire an 
oi)en valley leads to the Meuse a 
little below Sedan. The greater 
length of this valle}' is followed 
by a small stream — the Bar; 
but while the valley exhibits 
strong meanders of rather large 
radius, the Bar is nothing l.)ut a 
little brook that wriggles here 
and there, back and forth, on 
the valley floor. The slopes of 
the valley floor have the usual systematic arrangement — steeper 
slopes on the outside of the curves, gentler slopes on the inside. 
A s})ur that enters one of the meanders from the upland on the 
west, covered l)y the Bois la Queue near St Aignan, has so narrow 
a neck that the canal leading from the Meuse to the Seine sys-' 
tern has cut a trench through the neck instead of going around 
the spur. (See Plate V.) 

Tlie indications of the former greater volume of water in the 
stream tliat once swung boldly around tbe meanders of this 
valley are perfectly conclusive. But now the little Bar staggers 



THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


233 


about in the most random manner, quite unable to continue the 
widening of the meanders and the narrowing of the necks of the 
spurs by running S3^stematically against the outer side of tlie 
valley curves. The meadow-like (piality of the flat valle}' floor 
suggests that the Bar has aggraded its course since the greater 
volume of Avater was AvithdraAvn at the Grand Pre ell)OW, thus re- 
peating the features of the Meuse about Commercy. FolloAving 
up the Bar, the breadth of the valley and the radius of its large 
meanders are slowly diminished for a long distance ; but the little 
Bar winding through the meadow floor, rapidly diminishes, and 
near Buzanc}’’ the meadow is left without more drainage than is 
given by such ditches as the farmers have cut here and there for 
the better drying of their flat, marshy fields. Passing further to 
the southeast along the meandering valley, we soon find a small 
stream, successively called the Moulin, Briquenay, and Agron, 
flowing soutliAvard for seven miles in a trench cut along the val- 
ley-trough to the elbow of capture above Grand Pre. This is 
the back-handed stream by Avhose growth from the elbow of cap- 
ture the beheaded Bar has been progressively more and more 
shortened. 

Whether the divide at present existing beGveen the obsequent 
Briquenay-Agron and the beheaded Bar has been determined in 
this case by the accumulation of detritus washed in from the 
valley slopes, as it apparentl}'’ was in the case of the Pagny, I 
cannot surely say; but there does not appear to be much dis- 
]>arity between the time required for the amount of widening 
that the gorge of the Aire has received at the elbow of capture and 
for the headward growth of the back-handed Bri(iuenay-Agron. 
As in the case of the Toul (upper Moselle), so with the Aire ; its 
old valley floor, occupied at a time Avhen it still ran down the 
valley now occupied by the Bar, is easily recognized in the flat, 
terrace-like benches in either direction from the elbow of caj)- 
ture; but these benches now overlook the widened trench of the 
diverted Aire and the narrower trench of the reversed Bri<pie- 
nay-Agron. A considerable dei)th is maintained l>y the trench 
of tlie Aire for some distance U[) the stream from the elbow of 
capture, and, of course, also through the former valley' Ibjor of 
the diverter on the way to ,\isne; but on going iq> the reversed 
stream its trench rapidl}' decreases in dei)th, and near Buzancy 
it makes but a slight deju’ession in the meadows. 

One of the most interesting p(flnts of view for the appreciation 
of this exani[)le of river arrangement is on the flat fields of the 


234 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


old valley floor near the elbow of capture, just south of the vil- 
lage of Chanipigueules. Here all the different parts are easily 
recognized, as if on a model made expressly for the explanation 
of the problem. In some pits dug here and there by the road- 
side on the plain one may see the old river gravels laid down by 
the Aire while it was running at this high level on its way north- 
ward to the INIeuse. Another point of view no less instructive is 
offered after surmounting the hill by which the national road 
soutliward from Sedan, on the Meuse, crosses over to the valley of 
the Bar at Chevenges. Fi*om the summit and along the south- 
ward descent one has a beautiful view of the broad valley as it 
swings around the narrow-necked sjiur of the Bois la Queue, but 
he looks in vain for the stream by which the valley was cut. He 
fails to see any stream at all until descending to the valle}^ floor, 
when the only occupant of the great, boldly swinging valle}^ is 
found to be a little meadow brook. 

Here, as before, it should be remembered that it is not the 
width of the valley that is essentially discordant with the size 
of the brook that now drains it; for in the late maturity of the 
geogra))hical development of a land surface even small streams 
have broad valleys. Tlie discordance which proclaims that the 
valley is not the work of the existing stream is seen in the rela- 
tive dimensions of their meanders. The valley swings regularly 
in curves of at least half a mile in radius, and maintains this habit 
of curvature with small diminution far up toward the elbow of 
capture and probably still further south. The stream turns and 
twists in curves whose radius may often be less than a hundred 
feet. * 

In comparing the case of the Toul (upper Moselle) and Aire, 
we see that these rivers are the diverted upper portions of 

♦ The following altituiles are instructive: 

Junction of Bar and Meuse 153 m. 

Divide in old valley-trough between the beheaded Bar and the reversed Bri- 

quenay-Agron on the meadows west of Buzancy 175 m. 

Junction of the reversed Briquenay-Agron with the Aire at the elbow of 

capture 130 m. 

Floor of old Aire valley at elbow of capture 182 m. 

Junction of Aire and Aisne 113 m. 

The advantage of depth thus gained by the Aire is about 50 m. 

It is worth noticing that if the Aire had not been diverted at Grand Pr6 it would 
have soon been captured farther down its former valley at Brieulles-sur-Bar for here 
the Fournelle, a branch of the Aisne, has almost cut through the forested ridge of 


Argonne, as the following heights show : 

Mouth of Fournelle in Aisne by Vouziers 100 m. 

Divide between head of Fournelle and Bar near Noirval 174 m. 

Bar at Brieulles 168 m. 


THE SEINE, THE HEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


235 

branches that once belonged to the INIense. The diverters (by 
which the Toul was given over to the Moselle and the Aire to 
the Aisne) may be called the Pompey and the Grand Pre re- 
spectively, the latter ultimately delivering its prize through the 
Marne to the Seine. The beheaded streams of the two are the 
Pagny and the Bar. The former is so insignificant that I have 
had to invent a name for it, finding no name for the stream but 
only the “ IVlarais de Pagny ” entered on the Etat-major map of 
1 80,000. The Bar is the best example that I have ever seen 
of a beheaded stream trying ineffectually to live up to the robust 
habits of its great predecessor. 

The diminished Meuse again . — The loss suffered by the Meuse 
and the increase gained by the Seine through the diversion of 
the Aire are of no great moment, but as far as they go they serve 
to confirm each river in the habits that now characterize it — the 
IMeuse in staggering with uncertain steps around its valley curves, 
the Seine and the Moselle in swinging boldly around their curves 
and undermining the inclosing bluffs. It should be noted, how- 
ever, that when a large tributar}^ is diverted from a point high 
u[) on the trunk of a main river, the loss of volume that the 
change produces may be a large fraction of the total volume that 
once belonged to the main river, and hence that the loss may 
greatl}' affect the ability of the main river still to follow the 
swinging valley tliat it cut out when its volume was greater. 
On the other hand, when a tributary of relatively small volume 
is diverted from some point near the middle of the main river, 
the loss thus occasioned will be a comparatively small fraction 
of tlie trunk volume, and tlie change of habit thus produced 
will be corresi)ondingly small. It is for this reason that the 
staggering of the Meuse near Commercy is so much more marked 
than between Sedan and Mezieres. The loss of the Toul (upper 
Moselle) was a much more serious affair for the Meuse than the 
loss of the Aire. 

Sapideinentarij problems . — There are certain aspects of this ])rol)- 
lem tliat remain to be considered briefly. First, are there any 
other examples of branches diverted from the system of the 
Meuse to those of its neighliors on the west and east? Although 
I have been unable to find any direct signs of them on the maj), 
there still does seem to be indication that other diversions have 
occurred. On looking at the Meuse above Pagny, it is there 
almost as much out of proportion to its valley as it is below 
Pagu}’. It is po.ssilde, therefore, that other headwater branches 


230 


THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


higher up than the upper Moselle have been diverted. Looking 
at the Aire, it appears that the present radius of the meanders 
is much smaller than the radius of the swinging valley that is 
followed by the little Bar, and from this it may be inferretl that 
not only the existing Aire but the drainage of a still larger basin 
once ran down the valley of the Bar. Perhaps the upper Ornain 
represents something of the additional volume that the Aire 
once po.ssessed, but I cannot find direct indication tliat such is 
the fact. The maps on the scale of 1 : 80.000 seem hardly of 
suHicient detail to enable one to solve this j)hase of the problem 
by indoor study alone. The whole subject calls for extended 
study in the field, and a more interesting problem could hardly 
l)e selected for a summer’s work. 

Another subject to which no reference has yet been made is, 
nevertheless, of fundamental importance to the whole ])roblem : 
Why is it that the Seine and the Moselle are waxing at the ex- 
j)ense of the waning Meuse ? Why do they possess an advantage 
while tlie intermediate stream is at a disadvantage ? How could 
the Meuse ever have gainetl so large a drainage area as it once 
must have had, if at a later stage of its history it was to be so 
closely sliorn of its branches ? This is too large a problem to 
enter far ui)on now, but it contains two elements that may be 
Indefiy stated. One is that many ot the streams in the region 
of the Meuse are longitudinal streams — that is, they run chiefly 
along the strike of the weaker strata and their valleys have long 
ascending slopes on the eastern side and more abrui)t sloi)es on 
tlie western side. The highlands reached by these slopes are 
determined by the outcrop of more resistant strata than those of 
the valleys wliich the streams have excavated. Longitudinal 
streams of this kind I have called ‘'subsequent,^' l)elieving that 
they cannot have originated in immediate conseciuence of the 
original slopes of the land surface when it first arose above the 
sea, but that their opportunity came later when the wasting of 
the weak strata allowed the headward growth of streams along 
tlieir strike, after the manner ex})lained in connection with the 
adjustments of the Marne and its branches near Chalons. The 
Meuse and at least some of the branches that it once had there- 
fore seem themselves to have been the result of dejjredations 
committed on the territory of some still earlier river or rivers, 
and if this is true, the sympathy that the present impoverished 
condition of the Meuse excites is not deserved. 

However this may be, why is it that the Meuse has lately 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXVI 





(C 




'’rr^lS,, 


jMalmv^i:^ 

r/ /jt% M 


iVTaj^nccl 


the lower valley of the bar 


i>hi-n , 1 /,.^ f., I'tati., , / $o.o,M 




THE SEINE, THE MEUSE, AND THE MOSELLE 


237 


found so great difficulty in deepening its valley and thus saving 
its branches from capture b}'' its neighbors? The chief cause of 
this difficulty must be looked for in the u})lift of the Ardennes, 
across whose resistant rocks the lower Meuse has, during Tertiaiy 
time (perhaps only during later Tertiary time), been cutting its 
grand gorge. Like the highlands #of the middle Rhine, the 
Ardennes consist of ancient and deformed rocks which have 
once been reduced to a peneplain of moderate relief drained 
idle streams,* but across which the Meuse is now actively cutting 
a deej) transverse valley in consequence of the strong uplift of 
the region. While the peneplain was yet a lowland the Meuse 
was comparatively safe from depredations, but during the eleva- 
tion of the peneplain and thereafter, great difficulty must have 
been experienced in deepening the valley. The Moselle must 
also have had some difficulty in deepening its valley through 
the uplifted highlands of the middle Rhine, but the uplift there 
does not seem to have been so great as it was in the Ardennes, 
and thus the Seine and the Moselle seem to have gained an ad- 
vantage over the unlucky river between their headwaters. It is, 
indeed, remarkable enough that the Meuse is still able to main- 
tain its course across the uplifted Ardennes, and its success can 
only be explained by regarding it as an excellent example of an 
antecedent river. It has battled manfully to preserve its course, 
and in this it has been wonderfully successful, for the highlands 

*Thi.s view of tiie history of the Ardennes is strongly presented in an essay by Pro- 
fessor de Lapparent, entitled “ L’age des formes topdgraphiques ” (Rev. des questions 
scientifiqnes, October, 1894) ; but there is one conclusion that he announces from which, 
if I understand him correctly, I must differ. Professor de Lapparent states that, at the 
beginning of Tertiary time, when the Ardennes were denuded close to the level of the 
sea, “the streams there circulated capriciously and almost with out slope on the sur- 
face of a region devoid of relief.” The “ capricious ” .irrangement of the streams seems 
to me very unlikely. Inasmuch as the present drainage of tlie Ardennes is for the 
most part accomplisheil by a rectangular system of streams, which follow longitudinal 
courses along the weaker strata and transverse courses across the stronger strata, it 
seems advisable to picture the peneplain to which the Ardennes were reduced as still 
possessing faint residuals of the many ridges that once rose above the peneplain, and 
to conceive the streams as e.xhibiting a well-adjusted relation to the structures, such 
as they would have slowly and laboriously acquired during the making of a peneplain 
from a once mountainous region of disorderly structure. The present rectangular 
streams wouhl then be, not the readjusted successors of :i capricious system of di-ainage 
on the peneplain, but the persistent successors of the laboriously adjusted streatns of 
pre-Teriiary beginning. If some of the streams of the Ardennes now exhibitcapri<'inus 
courses, unrelated to the structure in which their valleys are incised, they may be the 
successors of late Tertiary streams that had lost the adjustment of maturity in the 
meandering of old age, or they may be inherited fi-om courses that were assumed on a 
cover of unconformably superposed strata of late (Iretaceous or early Tertiary date, 
now all strippeil off; but, as far as I have seen the region and studied the maps, capi i- 
ciouH streams of this kind ilo not prevail. The characteristic rectangular streams aro 
well shown on slieets 48 and .‘it of tlie Helgian topogranliical maps; scale, 1 : 4u,nno. 

Ifi 


288 


A JOUEXEY IX ECUADOR 


of the Ardennes through which its deep gorge is cut are now 
higher than the uplands in which its meandering valley is sunk 
for some distance above Mezieres. Yet although successful in 
holding its wa}’’ through the revived mountains of the Ardennes, 
it has had to pay dearly for this success by the loss of its side 
branches. The hard rocks, of the uplifted Ardennes form a sill 
that holds the upper Meuse at a relatively high level and allows 
the head branches of the Seine and Moselle to undercut it on 
either side. Thus it is left as a waning river, still persevering 
l>ravely in its course, but much embarrassed by the diversion to 
its encroaching neighbors of certain tributaries from whom it 
had expected loyal assistance in its great task of cutting a way 
through all obstacles to the sea. 


A JOURNEY IN ECUADOR 

By Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 

I left Panama on June 26, 1894, and two days later made 
my first stop at Buenaventura. Here a Californian, Mr J. L. 
Cherry, is building a railroad to the interior of Colombia, to pene- 
trate Cauca valle}^ probabl}’’ the richest district in quartz and 
placer gold mines in South America. The railroad here has been 
completed to Cordoba, some thirty or forty miles inland from 
this town. Transportation across the mountains is effected by 
})acking. 

On June 30 I arrived at Tumaco, on the borders of Colombia 
and Ecuador, at the mouth of Rio Mira. From this point in- 
land via Patia river and Barbacoas another mule trail leads to 
the interior of Colombia, this and the one already noted being 
the only ways of reaching the interior from the Pacific. At 
Tumaco the fruit is delicious, mangoes, pineapples, oranges, and 
a})i'icots being finer than at any other place I visited. 

The next river southward (in Ecuador) is Rio Santiago. Be- 
tween this river and the Mira there is at high water a deep and 
narrow interior channel or sound, which is generally traversed by 
canoe in preference to the rougher outside journey by sea. In 
this portion of Ecuador transportation is entirely by canoe, as the 
Andes rise abruptly from the Pacific, culminating in the im- 
mense peaks of Chimborazo (20,498 feet) and Cotopaxi (19,480 
feet). The onl}" regular route to the interior in Ecuador is the 



DRAINAGE MAP OF NORTHWESTERN ECUADOR 
I-fom the Stitvey of Mark li. Kerr, Civil /engineer, and A’. M. etrango. Assistant /engineer 

Coast line ami adjacent country from the Ivcuador Government Survey, hy courtesy of C. Van Kscliott, Ksq., 

of Guayaquil, Kcuaclor 

Klevation above sea level shown in figures 


Kerr's route 


240 


A JOURNEY IN ECUADOR 


rough road from Guayaquil to Quito, crossing the Andes at an 
elevation of 14,0rX) feet just south of Chimborazo. 

On the journey from Tumaco I was accompanied by an English- 
man named Nelson. The first day out we stoi)ped for the night 
in this interior channel. The vegetation was dense and thick, and 
])arasitic vines stretched completely across the waterway. Many 
different kinds of parrots combined with innumerable insects 
and lizards and a few monkeys to make night hideous ; and 
when a sharj), curious noise like a dog-bark caused my friend 
to thrust his head from under his leafy canopy in the canoe to 
inquire, “ What is that noi.se?” I answered “An equi snake.” 
Nelson dropj>ed back under his ranch, and when he ventured 
out in the morning remarked, “ What an infernal country, when 
even the snakes bark ! ” 

We followed the inland passage to the mouth of Rio Santiago 
and ascended this river 12 miles to Borhon. The pa.ssage was 
so narrow and the vegetation so thick as to give the impression 
of floating through a forest. At Borhon we found a warehouse 
which thereafter served as our base of supplies. The Spaniards 
knew of gold jdacers on the Santiago over two hundred 3’^ears 
ago and brought in negro slaves to work them. The descendants 
of these .slaves now peoi)le one branch of the river, numbering 
over 1 ,500. The\^ crowded out the natives (the Cayapas Indians, 
about 1,000 in number), who retired to another fork of the same 
river. At Borhon the Santiago forks, the left (northern) and 
decidedl}' smaller branch retaining the name, while the right 
fork is called Cayapas, after the native tribe. The old semi- 
civilization of South America and Central America seems to 
have been confined to the elevated j)lateaus, particularly in Peru 
and Ecuador, and there onlv do we find ruins of the remarkable 
Imildings constructed by the Incas, such as those of Quito, Cuzco, 
and Lake Titicaca. When Pizarro conquered this region in the 
earlier half of the sixteenth century many of these people fled 
before the conquistador and established new homes along the 
banks of these torrential rivers, which plunge into the Pacific 
after a limited course, usuall}" 75 to KK) miles. These rivers 
would seem magnificent if the}' were not surpa.ssed by the gran- 
deur of their neighbors, the Orinoco and the Amazon. Santiago 
river and its branches rise in the snowy crest of the Andes, and 
the Cayapas Indians are })robably descendants of the Chimec or 
Chibcha, who, conquered neither by Inca nor Spaniard, retired 
to remote districts and held themselves aloof from strangers. 



VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXVII 



- ^ 
QC 

uJ ^ 





A JOURNEY IN ECUADOR 


241 


Along most of the rivers descending from the Andes to the 
Pacific in Ecuador gold was found in small quantities by the 
Spaniards. In this eager search for the yellow metal the In- 
dians were forced to give way, and now in tiieir homes along the 
banks of the Cayapas the}'’ meet all strangers in an inhospitable 
and surly manner. The negroes have borrowed many customs 
and useful arts in weaving, house-building, etc., from the Cayapas 
Indians, and, having retained many old habits of their former 
African abode, combined with some of the worst traits of the in- 
ferior whites, may be summed up as being phlegmatic, ignorant, 
superstitious, without strong family ties or sense of gratitude. 
Their superstitions take the form of incantations to prevent acci- 
dents, and especial trouble is taken to prevent the devil from 
taking possession of infants. Some respect is felt for the priest 
who occasionally visits here, but with these negroes religion is 
only another word for superstition. 

But to return to my journey On July 17 we left Borbon and 
proceeded by steam launch 28 miles up Rio Cayapas. Grasses, 
ferns, and bushes (mostly of the class Umbellifer£e) lined the 
banks and mingled with the cocoanut trees, the breadfruit, the 
splendid royal palm, and the mango with its spreading and 
symmetrical foliage. These magnificent trees with their large 
leaves strained imagination to the utmost and utterly deceived 
the eye in grasping proportions. While lost in silent admira- 
tion of such a wealth of vegetation, we turned a sharp bend 
of the river and over the tliatched huts of the natives could 
be seen the overhanging feathery tufts of the bamboo, w'hich 
softened as well as lightened up the intensely dark hue of vege- 
tation in the background. This was the headquarters of Na}) 0 , 
the gobernador of the Cayapas. A judicious presentation of 
heads and buttons insured us a pleasant reception from the chief, 
and he detailed a guide for us on the upper river. 

The house of the gobernador was on stilts (as is the case with 
most of these houses) and was built like a long rectangle, 100 by 
GO feet. Two large fireplaces (wooden Ijoxes elevated about 
three or four feet above the lloor and filled witli sand) and some 
large fiat stones sufiiced for cooking pur|>o.ses, wliile four small 
e.xtensions, two on each side of the house, like hay windows, 
served as sleeping apartments for the difi'erent meml)ers of the 
family. The men are well formed, of good stature, beardless, 
with glossy black hair, and splendid chest development, while 
the women, l)eing forced to do all the work, are generally small, 


242 


A JOURXEY IX ECUADOR 


coarsely fat, and disfigured b}'’ black streaks across their faces 
arms, and breasts. They wear an embroidered cloth of their 
own manufacture tied around the waist and reaching to the knee, 
and the men wear a garment like swimming trunks, made of the 
same material. 

Boiled plantain lieaten into cakes between two flat stones con- 
stituted supper and breakfast. After supi)er the women engaged 
in weaving cloth from shreds of i)lantain fiber, and through this 
embroidered long pieces of cotton dyed by rolling cotton in 
natural l)lues and reds through the cloth like wax-ends. This 
cloth, all hand-made, was when completed extremely hand- 
some, reminding one of the figures and coloring of German em- 
broidery. The men amused themselves lolling in hammocks or 
])laying on the marimba, an instrument made of upright pieces 
of bamboo with pieces of hard wood laid across them, in tone like 
a xyloplione. Sometimes they played minor chords on another 
instrument like a harp. A fire of a sort of resinous wood served 
to light up the scene until night fell black and damp, and we 
were lulled to sleep by the crackling flight of large beetles and 
the occasional hoarse bark of a tree-frog or lizard. 

p]arly the next morning we visited the trapiclie or sugar-cane 
press of the chief. Here two huge wooden rollers set close to- 
gether pressed the cane stalks and large metal ve.ssels received 
the juice. Distilling pots were placed convenient!}’' near. All 
the apparatus had apparently been in use for many years. 

These natives make light and swift canoes and leaf-shape pad- 
dles, and are also skillful in weaving hats, fans, and hammocks 
from the many-colored rushes and grasses. From the “ pita ’’ 
they make fish nets and lines, and by whipping a small stream, 
diving, and keeping the net close to the bottom they inclose the 
fish in a small space, when men, women, and children have great 
sjjort in spearing them. Besides this, the men are skillful fisher- 
men, and when the river is high an Indian can often be seen, with 
one hand holding his pole and the other propelling and guiding 
his canoe in a manner worthy of the most scientific sportsman. 
They also make a sort of vegetable cloth by beating otf the out- 
side covering of strips of Tanajaqua bark, which afterwards by 
repeated washings becomes pliable. 

By some means of rapid signaling our ])rogress up the river 
was anticipated, but thanks to the kind office of our friend, the 
gobernador, although not altogether hospitably received, we were 
still permitted to pass along without question. Along the whole 


A JOURNEY IN ECUADOR 


243 


course of this river we found different clans living in communal 
style in these large houses, similar to the house of the chief, skill- 
ful in weaving cloth and carving figures out of wood, without 
doubt arts from a higher civilization. The custom of removing 
the bones from the head of the dead and then drying and em- 
balming the latter seems confined to the Serranos on the upper 
plateaus, but I saw one of these heads, about the size of an ordi- 
nary ball, with perfect hair and features. This tribe is entirely 
pure, and although most of them understand the Spanish of the 
country, they use their own language among themselves. 

Reaching the head of steam navigation, we again took to bur 
canoes. The river, swollen by recent rains, rushed down at a 
furious rate, and the native boatmen, clinging to roots and over- 
hanging bushes, used vigorously both paddle and pole, shouting 
and babbling to each other louder even than the roar of the water. 
We encountered mostly sedimentary rocks until we reached the 
Sapayo. The bed-rock then was soft and contained fossil shells, 
some of them belonging to the Chico group. A short distance 
up this river the formation changes. Immediately above an 
altered sandstone and slate and then granite and quartz occur. 
In the Sapollite the quartz is gold-bearing, but above it is barren. 
Further above occur the diabase rocks and lavas to the crest of 
the mountains. Outside of the Sapollite and Sapayo Grande the 
rocks are base, gabbro-like, and carry no gold. The float of the 
Sapayo Grande shows crystals of quartz and Brazilian topaz, but 
none of the stones we saw were valuable. 

Having reached the head of canoe navigation on Cayapas river 
and made an examination of the placers there, we built a hut after 
the native fashion and made our second base camp. My plan 
was to cross the cordillera and examine the rocks and topography 
of the country between tlie rivers Cayapas and Santiago. 

We found here an old trail running into the interior across the 
Andes to the town of Cotocachi. No white man had ever gone 
so high u[) the river or attempted the interesting journey across 
the Andes. On account of the heavy rainfall (a)jout 30 inches a 
montli) it is very dillicult to j)reserve negatives, and even cloth- 
ing S(jon becomes mildewed. A great many of my exposures 
were ruined ami most of the negatives were spotted by the damp- 
ness. Thus my photographs are few and im])erfect. 

Leaving all our miscellaneous equipage at this camp, we 
decided to cut our way along the old trail. Never bolbn' in all 
my experience had I encountered such a wealth of vegetable 


244 


A JOURXEY IX ECUADOR 


and insect life as here in the depth of the equatorial forest. 
Many-colored moths, butterflies, and humming-birds fluttered 
from plant to plant, and even snakes, toads, and lizards were 
clothed in ])revailing bright hues. The snakes were generally 
about the size of the rattlesnake, with flat heads and large fangs, 
and many of them were venomous. The boa here does not reach 
so great a size as on the Amazon drainage, the largest we saw 
being eight feet long and three inches thick. On some of the 
smaller streams one species of reptile, light green in color, had 
an uncanny way of dropping unexpectedly from trees, once in 
awhile actually dropping into our canoe as we passed. Two 
large copper tanks were filled with different species of reptiles. 
One earthworm was found two feet long, a cockroach three 
inches, and a grasshopper three and one-half inches in length. 
Large fireflies, with two phosphorescent eyes, were plentiful; 
they made a crackling noise in flight. During the night we 
stuffed cotton in our ears, not alone to drown the droning and 
buzzing of the insects, but also to prevent the pests from crawl- 
ing in while we slept. 

Four or five natives in charge of an assistant were sent ahead 
with provisions, to put up ranches (a ranch here is a temporary 
camp) of cane and palm leaves, and with three others I brought 
up the rear. The vegetation changed somewhat and became 
semi-tropical in character, the red cedar predominating, and 
although there was not the same dense jungle .as below, still the 
underl)rush was luxuriant, and our machete men were kept busy 
in cutting out the large tangled roots and dense vegetation which 
obstructed our path up the ridges. As we ascended the stream 
we noticed many butterflies on the playas. Toward evening the 
numl^er increased until for an hour they passed over our heads 
in perfect swarms like locusts. 

We passed two falls by swimming and climbing along the edge 
of the rocky bank until it was too steep to even afford foothold. 
We then made a raft of light balsa wood and passed along the 
cliffs to the third fall. Wearied by our work, we j>itched our 
tent .along the edge of the canon about thirty-five feet aVjove the 
water. For the sake of convenience our Jamaican cook had 
l)itched his camp under a shelving rock about twent}' feet above 
the water. Shortly after dark we heard the distant thunder in 
the mountains, and in two hours, before we bad even time to 
realize wbat had happened, the water came doAvn in one solid 
sheet of white foam and washed our kitchen away, leaving us. 


A JOURNEY IN ECUADOR 


245 


however, the cook. The water rose thirty feet, and then gradu- 
ally subsided, having just missed canying away our entire camp. 

After we left the river one high ridge was reached onl}" to 
plunge again into a ravine on the other side, for the trail carried 
us across the many forks of the Sapa}^ Grande. We made only 
four or five miles a day. One day, having a particularly rough 
and difficult journe}' to make, we failed to reach our camp and 
remained all night upon the cordillera. The darkness fell 
rapidly. Suddenly a peal of thunder was heard, followed by a 
sound like a rushing, furious wind through the tree-tops, the 
signal of approaching rain. It came in torrents, wetting us 
through and through, and putting out our fire. The earth, like 
a sponge filled to repletion, received and gave off’ its additional 
moisture, making the air intensely humid. We sat up the rest 
of the night, clinging to the roots of the trees, hearing the whirr 
of innumerable birds, the buzz of countless insects, and the howl- 
ing of wild cats, while large firebugs and a phosphorescent gleam 
from decayed vegetation spread a weird glow that only served to 
intensify the darkness. 

On the fourth day we reached the main divide or cordillera 
overlooking Rio Santiago, 8,000 feet above the sea, and leading 
direct to the summit of Cotocachi. This peak is included in 
the scheme of triangulation and observation of Juan and Ulloa, 
Humboldt and Pissis. At this point the Andes begin to show 
their power; numerous streams fall in beautiful cascades over 
the cliff's and disappear in the vegetation below, while not far 
away looms up a snowy summit, 17,000 feet above sea level. 

After extending our reconnaissance to the river we returned 
over our trail and down the Cayapas to the headquarters at Bor- 
bon. For some reason we were avoided by the natives, and even 
treated with o)>en signs of enmit 3 ^ Plowever, we had accom- 
plished all we wished in limiting the areas containing gold gravel 
and in making a rough but interesting trip in a very short time. 


THE ABERRATION OF SOUND AS ILLUSTRATED BY 
THE BERKELEY POWDER EXPLOSION 


By Robert LI. Chapman, 

United States Geological Surrey 

Dr Cl):irle.s A. Wliite* and Mr Arnold B. Johnson t have 
treated of the sounds given by fog-sirens. They have discovered 
areas close to the siren in which the sound is inaudible. In some 
cases this fact is accounted for by the intervention of an object, 
such as an island or mountain, but not infrequently there is no 
visil)le obstruction to the sound waves coming from the siren. 
It is my wish to ju’esent some facts that have come within my 
own observation and that show a direct relationship between 
sound waves and waves of motion generated b}' sharj) explosions. 

On Saturday, July 1), 1892, about 9.30 a. m., an explosion oc- 
curred at the giant-powder works at LVest Berkeley, California. 
The first explosion was in the “ mixing-room,” and about 1,000 
pounds of nitro-glycerine were discharged. About five minutes 
later the three magazines blew up, the final ex])losion being the 
heaviest. The total amount of powder and nitro-glycerine ex- 
ploded was about 250 tons. The shock of the last explosion was 
very severe, the column of smoke and flame rising to a height 
of at least 1,200 feet, and resembling a volcanic eruption. The 
damage in San Francisco, eight miles across the bay, was very 
great, ])late-glass windows being broken, doors forced, and sky- 
lights shattered. Tne shock seemed to be a little heavier in the 
low-lying portion of the city, although farther from the scene of 
the explosion, than in the hilly (piarter. It was distinctly felt by 
the engineer and passengers of a rapidly moving express train 
12 miles north of the works. A train only five miles distant was 
l)artially protected by hills, and no shock was noticed. At Napa, 
28 miles due north, the shock was distinctly noticeable. 

About one and one-half miles a little south of east of the works 
and at about 100 feet higher elevation is situated a large frame 

* Science, yo\. xxiii, pp. 59-62, The Relation of the Sounds of Fog Signals to other 
.Sounds. 

t Science, vol. xxiii, pp. 3-6, The Cruise of the Clover. 

See also The Modern Light-house Service, pp. “4-91, .4. B. Johnson, and Report upon 
Fog-signal Experiments (Report of the Light-house Board, 1891, Appendix No. V), 
pp. 289-304, W. R. Livermore. 


24G 


THE ABERRATION OF SOUND 


247 


building, built for hotel purposes, and having a great number of 
rooms and windows. It was used at that time as a young ladies’ 
seminary, but the explosion occurred during vacation, and the 
president of the institution and his family were the only persons 
occupying it. Accordingly most of the rooms were vacant and 
the doors and windows closed. The dimensions of the building 
are about 200 feet in an east- west direction by 50 feet north and 
south, and it is several stories high. On the first floor are large 
dining-rooms, reception-rooms, etc, with a hallway in the middle 



rooms on each side of the hall, and transoms over the doors, 
with elevator and stairways in the middle of the building, as 
shown in the accompanying ground jdan and proHle, whicli, 
however, are given as correct only as to their general features. 
For convenience, the windows shown in the skeUih arc numbered 
vertically from the bottom and lettered con.secutively from tlu; 
loft. 

'file conservatory, on the north side of the building, was badly 
broken, both glass and framewctrk, the latter being movi'd out- 


248 


THE ABERRATION OF SOUND 


ward, or toward the focus of action. All the windows on the 
western end of the building were broken, while those on the 
eastern end were uninjured. The direction of the waves of mo- 
tion was toward the northwest corner of the building. On exam- 
ining the column marked 6, I found window 2 blown in and its 
frame broken into small pieces. Window 3 was uninjured, while 
4 was in a condition similar to 2, both glass and frame being 
broken. This skipping of alternate windows in the same verti- 
cal line was remarked in several instances, but the broken win- 
dows were not always in the same horizontal line. I remarked 
no .s\’’stematic alternations in injuries to windows of the same 
stoiy. In some cases the transom above the door of a room, the 
door and window being shut, was broken, glass and frame, the 
door blown in toward the room and broken from the hinges and 


S 

MAIN ENTRANCE 



lock, the window remaining uninjured. Many windows on the * 
south side of the building, the side unexposed to the direct force 
of the explosion, were broken and many doors on the south side 
of the hallway were broken and unhinged. The large doors at 
the entrance of the building on the south side were broken from 
hinges, lock, and floor-bolt; one was blown in and the other 
blown out. No damage was noted in the vicinity of the eleva- 
tor shaft, where the air in the building was free to circulate. The 
general rule appeared to be that the doors were forced toward 
the room or hallway having the greater cubical contents. Look- 
ing at the north side of the building, one was impressed with the 
fact that it appeared to have been bombarded, the windows be- 
ing broken in groups. This seems to bear out, to some extent 
at least, the assertion of Professor P. G. Tait, that “in the case 
of a disturbance in air due to a very sudden explosion, as of 
d^mamite or as by the passage of a flash of lightning, it is proVj- 


THE ABERRATION OF SOUND 


249 


able that for some distance from the source the motion is of a 
projectile character.”* 

The breaking of the transoms over doors, while the window 
w'as uninjured, and the breaking of the windows unexposed to 
the direct force of the explosion are very interesting phenomena, 
and I wish to otTer an explanation which I think will account 
for the facts observed. The path of the maximum of disturb- 
ance results largely from the unequal resistance of the air, and 
while at the actual center of explosion the pressure may be in 
“ concentric shells,” at a very short distance it becomes stellar. 
The changing pressure of the wind, as shown b^^ Professor Lang- 
ley’s experiments, and the shape of the flame in an explosion 
(stellar) lead one to this conclusion. As the maximum wave 
moves from the focus, the air forming it is constantly changing, 
and the following sketch illustrates the path of an air particle 
as I believe it to be : 



A, B, and Care air particles in the })ath of a maximum wave 
traveling along the line 0 P. The motion of each is first along 
the line of 0 P, away from the focus, a result of direct imj)act of 
other particles, then back to its original i)osition, or near it. the 
track forming a closed curve. When the ])article is in the posi- 
tion A', B\ or C', its motion is toward the focus of the explosion, 
and so any damage it might do would be evidenced I)}" a break- 
ing of objects unexposed to the force of the direct wave. In the 
case of the transoms mentioned above, the back thrust which 
bnjke the glass and frame was cushioned by the air in the room, 
and so the window was not injured. 


* Eneyclop-cdia firitannicn, ninth eilition, vol. x.xiv, p. 418. 


MINERAL PRODUCTION IN THE UNITED STATES 


The mineral products of the United States in the calendar year 1895 
had a total value, according to the statistics collected by the U. S. Geologi- 
cal Survey, of $611,795,290. This amount, although nearly one-sixth 
greater than that for the preceding year, was less than in 1890, 1891, or 
1892. The quantities of the principal items were, however, greater than 
ever before, while the values were in many cases less, owing to the reduc- 
tion in prices. 

The most noteworthy increase in the list is in the case of pig iron, the 
quantity of which increased nearly 42 per cent, viz., from 6,657,388 long 
tons to 9,446,308 long tons, and the value nearly 62 per cent, viz., from 
$65,007,247 to $105,198,550. This production is the largest the country 
has ever seen and is probably not far from double that of the British 
islands. The decrease in silver production has continued, the amount 
j)roduced being 47,000,000 ounces, or about 24 million ounces less than 
the year before. The production of gold has greatly increased, being 
$47,000,000 against $39,500,000 in 1894. The product of the Transvaal 
was almost, equal to that of this countr}'. The production of copper has 
increased slightly, being 381,106,868 pounds. The production of lead 
also has increased, reaching 161,440 short tons. The output of coal con- 
sisted of 135,118,193 short tons of bituminous and 51,785,122 long tons of 
Pennsylvania anthracite. The output of coal, both bituminous and an- 
tliracite, is the largest on record. The production of petroleum was 
52,9S;l,526 barrels of 42 gallons each, the largest amount ever produced 
in a single year with the exception of 1891. The production of natural 
gas has slightly diminished. 

The enormous increase in some of these items, especially those of pig 
iron and coal, illustrates in emphatic terms the promptness with which 
the supjily of such products responds to an increased demand. For two 
years the railroads of the United States were economizing in the pur- 
chase of rails, with the result that at the end of that time an unusually 
large number of lines were needing new rails, and the different compa- 
nies took advantage of the low price of steel to supply their necessities in 
this regard. The result was a large and sudden demand for steel rails, 
causing a great increase in price ; mines and furnaces were reopened, and 
general activity prevailed in the trade, resulting, as before stated, in an 
increase in the iron output of nearly 42 per cent over the previous year. 
In the case of most of our mineral products the output is limited only by 
the market. The supply and the facilities for extraction are more than 
sufficient to meet any l^ossible demand. 


250 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


EUROPE 

England. Four additional "wires, mainl}' for telephone pur])Oses, are 
to be laid between London and Paris. 

A census taken in iNIarcb last found the population of London, e.xclusive 
of the outer suburbs, to be 4,411,271, an increase of 199,528 in five years. 

ASIA 

India. In 1895 new railways aggregating over 800 miles in length were 
opened, while nearly 3,800 miles were under construction or sanctioned. 
The net earnings of the Indian railways averaged 5.78 per cent. 

China. The imports during 1895 amounted to 171,696,715 taels (the 
tael fluctuating between 65 and 74 cents), against 162,102,911 taels in 
1894. The exports amounted to 143,293,211 taels, against 128,104,522 taels 
in 1894. Silk is now a more important export article than tea. Raw cot- 
ton, also, is an export that is increasing very rapidly. Of the total foreign 
trade of nearly 315 million taels, Great Britain had over 215 millions, 
Japan 32 millions. Continental Europe (excluding Ru-ssia) 29 millions, the 
United States 2 O 5 millions, and the Russian empire 17 millions. Nearly 
219 million taels of this trade had its center in the port of Shanghai. The 
total number of foreign residents in China last year was 10,091, the British 
and Americans leading all other nations, with 4,084 and 1,325 respect- 
ively. Of the 603 foreign firms in the empire, 361 were British and 91 
German. 

AFRICA 

Uganda. About 100 miles of the new railway are expected to he con- 
structed this year, at a cost of about £520,000. The total outlay will lie 
not less than £3,000,000. 

• Asha.nti. iMajor Donovan, a British officer, recently visited lake 
Busumakwe and is said to be the first white man to have jienetrated that 
region. The area of the lake was found to be about 48 s(iuare miles, and 
there is no aiijiarent outlet. 

• Damomkv-Lagos. The Anglo-French commission for the demarcation 
of the boundary between Dahomey and Lagtis has coiii|)leted its task to 
the satisfaction of all concerned. Tiie French were found to have occu- 
pied several i)laces in British territory and to have been receiving taxes 
therefrom, but the representatives of the French government i>romptly 
withdrew on this fact being established. 

P>iHTiHH Ckntkal Ai-'kica. Mr A. J. Swann, the British magistrate at 
Kotakota, lake Nya.«sa, who some time ago discovered some remarkable 
fresh-water medusa;, has recently found an immense bed of lime fo.ssils 


252 


MISCELLANEA 


and flint, and the Royal Society of London has sent out an expedition to 
examine and report upon tlie latter discovery, with a view to throwing 
light on the origin of the great African lakes. 

NORTH AMERICA 

British A.merica. The government of Newfoundland is issuing bonds 
for the construction and equipment of a railway from a point on the Ex- 
ploits river about 200 miles from Placentia Junction to Port-aux- Basques. 


AUSTRALASIA 

Au.str.\li.\. An expedition left Adelaide on May 22 to explore the in- 
terior of the island. Its return is not expected until late in 1897. 

POLAR REGIONS 

The .steam-yacht Windward left London for Franz Josef Land on June 9 
for the relief of the Jackson expedition. She carried a very large supply 
of provisions, a number of sledges, 5,000 tabloids of the essential proper- 
ties of blood, and several thousand letters and packages. The Windward 
will call at Vardo to take on board coal, sheep, and reindeer, and she ex- 
pects to communicate with the explorers at cape Flora, Franz Josef Land, 
on or about July 20. The return of the exploring party before 1897 is, 
however, very unlikely. 


MISCELLANEA 

The Suez C.\x.\i>. The traffic through the Suez canal in 1895 comprised 
3,4:J4 ships, of 8,448,383 tons, with 216,938 passengers. Of the ships, 
2,318 were British, 314 German, 278 French, 192 Dutch, 78 Italian, 72 
Austrian, 57 Norwegian, 39 Russian, 36 Turkish, 33 Spanish, 5 American, 
3 Portuguese, 2 Chinese, 2 Egyptian, 2 Japanese, 2 Swedish, and i Danish. 
Of the passengers, 118,639 were soldiers, 74,878 civilians, and 23,421 pil- 
grims and emigrants. The total receipts were 78,426,000 francs, an in- 
crease of 4,299,000 francs, gross, and of 3,172,000 francs, net, over those 
of 1894. The average duration of the transit was 16 hours 18 minutes, 
a reduction of 23 minutes from the average of the preceding year. 

Deep-se.\ Soundings. The British Admiralty has just issued its report 
of the deep-sea soundings conducted by shij^s of the royal navy in 1895. 
Commander A. F. Balfour, in the Penguin, while surveying in the South 
Pacific, found very deep water to the eastward of a line drawn between 
the Friendly and Kermadec islands. Soundings of 5,147 and 5,155 fath- 
oms were obtained in latitude 28° 44.4' S., longitude 176° 04' W., and 
latitude 30° 27.7' S., longitude 176° 39' W., respectively. The deepest 
sounding ever before obtained was 4,655 fathoms, to the northeast of 
Japan. The new soundings are therefore deeper by about 3,000 feet than 
anything before discov^ered. A remarkable fact in connection with the 
new soundings is that these extraordinary depths are not far from land. 


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Mr. Cyrus C. Adams, New York. 

])r. Cyrus Adler, Smithsonian Institution. 

Mr. Marcus Baker, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. S. N. 

Dr. Francis Brown, Union Theol. Seminary. 

lion. Jefferson B. Browne, Collector of Cus- 
toms at Key West. 

Dr. H. L. Corthell, C. E., New York. 

Dr. Elliott Cones. 

Hon. William E. Curtis, ex-Director of the 
Bureau of the .\merican Republics. 

Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
American Ethnology. 

Dr. Charles W. Dabney, Jr., Assistant vSecre- 
tary of Agriculture. 

Dr. Win. H. Dali, Smithsonian Institution. 

Dr. George David.son, I’resident of the Geo- 
graphical Society of the Pacific. 

Mr. Arthur P. Davis, U. ,S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Win. M. Davis, Profe.ssor of Pli}'sical Geog- 
raphy in Harvard University. 

Dr. David T. Day, Chief of the Div. of Mining 
Statistics and Technology, U. S. Geol. Sur. 

Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

H«ni. John W. P'oster, ex-,Secretary of State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Geographer, U. S. 
Geological .Survey and nth Census. 

IMr. G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief Signal 
Officer, War Department. 

Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
National Geographic Society. 

Dr. Mark W. Harrington, President of the Uni- 
versity of the State of Washington. 

Lieut. Everett Hayddn, U. S. N., Secretary of 
the National Geographic Society. 

Mr. Robert T. Hill, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Win. H. Holnie.s, Dir. of the Dept, of An- 
thropology, Field Colum. Museum, Chicago. 

Dr. Emil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. Sheldou Jackson, U. S. Commissioner of 
Education for Alaska. 


Mr. Willard D. Johnson, U. S. Geol. Survey. 

Mr. Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 

Mr. George Kennan. 

Prof. William Libbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 

Prof. E. McClure, University of Oregon. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
nology. 

Mr. John E. McGrath, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S. N. 

Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Mass. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Ornithologist and Mani- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John H. Mitchell, U. S. S. 

Prof. W. L- Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. Frederick H. Newell, Chief Hydrographer 
of the U. S. Geological Surve 3 ^ 

Mr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coast Surve 3 ^ 

Lieut. Robert E. Peaiy, U. ,S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Pear)^ 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. S. 

Mr. William H. Pickering, Professor of .Astron- 
omy in Plarvard University. 

Major John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of American Ethnology. 

Prof. W. B. Powell, Superintendent of Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Ploti. John R. Procter, President of the U. S. 
Civil Service Commission. 

Mr. Israel C. Russell, Professor of Geology in 
the Univer.sit 3 ' of Michigan. 

Dr. N. vS. Shaler, Professor of Geology in Har- 
vard University. 

Commander Charles D. Sig.sbee, H}'drograplier 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Nav)' Dept. 

Miss Eliza Rnhaniah Scidmore. 

Commander Z. L- Tanner, U. vS. N. 

Mr. Frank Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U. S. 
Geological Survey. 

Mrs. Fannie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


PRINCIPAL CONTENTS OF RECENT NUMBERS. 


JANUARY. — Russia in Europe, with map, Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard ; The Arctic Cruise 
of the U. S. Revenue Cutter “Bear,” with illustrations. Dr. ,Sheldon Jackson; The 
Scope and Value of Arctic Exploration, Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A. 

FEBRUARY. — Venezuela: Her Government, People, and Boundary, with map and illustra- 
tions, William IC. Curtis ; The Panama Canal Route, with illu.strations, Prof. Robert T. 
Hill; The Tehuante])cc Ship Railwaj’, with nia])s, E. L. Corthell, C. E., LL. D. ; The 
Pre.sent State of the Nicaragua Canal, Gen. A. W. Grecl}' ; lCx])loralions by the Bureau 
of American Ethnolog)’, W J McGee. W/.vt; ;«<//> of thf Orinoco vaUev, showiui^ tcrrilory 
lirained bv that roaicnoav its bearing on the Venezuelan Itoniuiary Question. 

MARCH. — The So-Called “Jeannette Relics,” Prof. Win. H. Dali ; Nansen’s Polar Expedi- 
tion, Gen. /\. W. Greely; The .Submarine Cables of the World, Gustave llerrle ; The 
Survey’ and Subdivision of Inilian Territory, with map and illu.slration, Henry Gannett ; 
“ I'ree Burghs’’ in the United States, Janies II. Blodgett, .llso charts n) .v jio inches, 
s/um'iny Submarine ’I'eley;raph ('ables oj the World and Principal l.aud Lines. L'nll- 
pay^c portraits of Dr. Nansen and Prof. IVm. J 1. Dull. 

APRIL. — Seriland, with map and illustration, W J McGee and 'Willard I). Johnson; The 
Olynijiie Country, with nia]), the late S. C. Gilman; The Discovery of Glacier Bay, 
Alaska, Eliz.a Kuhamah Scidmore; 1 lydrograiihj' in the United States, l*'rederick 11. 
Newell; Recent Triangulalion in the Ca.scades, S. ,S. Gannett; The .Altitude of Mt. 
Adams, WiLshington, Edgar McClure. 

MAY. — Africa since i.SSH, with special reference to South .Africa and .Abyssinia, with inaji, 
Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard ; 1‘undainental th-ographic Relation of the 'I'liree .Americas, 
with inaj), Prof. Rfibert T. Hill ; 'I'he K.insas River, .Arthur P. Davis. Also portrait of 
Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the National Geographic Society. 

25 Cents per Number or $2.50 per Year. 


THE AUGUST NUMBER 


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will contain the following articles on the 

PIEDMONT PLATEAU 
OF VIRGINIA: 

THE PHYSIOGRAPHY OF THE REGION, 

By prof. W J McGEE; 

SPOTTSWOOD’S EXPEDITION OF 1716, 

By DR W. M. THORNTON, 

Chairman of the Faculty of the University of Virginia; 

ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS, 

By dr G. brown GOODE; 

JEFFERSON AS A GEOGRAPHER, 

By gen. a. W. GREELY, U. S. A., 
with other interesting contents. 


JUDD & DETWEILER, printers, WASHINGTON, D. C. 


3 l. VII 


AUGUST, 1896 


No. 8 


The 



A. W. GREELY 


I I 

Honorary Editor: JOHN j^YDE 
Hoporary Associate Editjors 
W j[m_cGEE - _ ELIZ^ RUHAl^AH SCIliMORE 


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GEOGRAPHIC HISTORY OP THE PIEDMONT PLATEAU. 

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SPOTTSWOOD S EXPEDITION OF 1716. 

DR WILLIAM M. THORNTON. 
JEFFERSON AS A GEOGRAPHER. GEN. A. W. GREELY 

ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS. DR G. BROWN GOODE. 
Geographic Notes, p. 281; Miscellanea, p. 283. 

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National Geographic Society 

ORGANIZED, JANUARY, 1888 


President 

GARDINER G. HUBBARD 
Vice-Presidents 

MARCU.S BAKER A. W. GREEI.Y 

WILLIAM IL DALL C. HART MERRIAM 

G. K. GILBERT HERBERT G. OGDEN 


Treasurer 
CHARLES J. BELL 


Recording Secretary 
EVERETT HAYDEN 


II. F. BLOUNT 
C. W. DABNEY, Jr. 
DAVID T. DAY 
JOHN HA'DE 


D 


Managers 


Corresponding Secretary 
HENRY GANNETT | 


IV J :UcGEE 
F. H. NEAVELL 
AV. B. POAVELL 
J. B. AVIGHT 





THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 
Back Numbers wanted by the Society. 

For the purpose of'makinor up complete sets of the Magazine, 
the National Geographic Society is prepared to purchase at rea- 
sonable prices the following back numbers ; 

Of Vol. I, 1889, numbers 2 and 4; of Vol. II, 1890, num- 
bers 2 and 3 ; of Vol. IV, 1892, numbers 1, 3, 4, 5, and 6. 

Members of the Society or other persons having spare copies 
of any of these numbers are invited to sell or present them to the 
Society, as they may prefer. 

Address; EVERETT HAYDEN, Seci'etary, 

1517 H Street, Washington. 



NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXVIII 







THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

VoL. VII AUGUST, 1896 No. 8 


THE WORK OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC 
SOCIETY* 

THE CHARACTER OF THE SOCIETY 

The National Geographic Society is a scientific organization. 
In common with most other scientific bodies, it is occupied in 
both creating and diffusing knowledge. B}'- reason of its activity 
in the diffusion of knowledge it has become a popular societ}% 
especially in the national capital, where most of the addresses 
and technical papers prepared under its auspices are delivered ; 
but the essential fact remains that it is a scientific society and 
that it is its function to create as well as to diffuse geographic 
knowledge. 

THE DEVELOPMENT OF GEOGRAPHY 

Ancient geogra[)hy was a description of continents and seas, 
nations and cities, races and tril)es, and perhaps of animals and 
])lants ; in the beginning the descriptions were oral, but with the 
invention of sketching, writing, and mapping a permanent geo- 
graphic art was developed. Thus ancient geography was chiefly 
the description of terrestrial things in words and pictures, and 
included the art of descrilfing earth-features with pen and l)rush 
and graver. In this stage geograj)hic features were assumed to be 
j)ermanent and were described in terms of form and position. 

As time passed men observed that tribes and peoples came 
and went, that cities were founded and sometimes abandoned, 
that nations arose and ))assed away; and thus history came to 
Ije and a time element was gradually introduced into geography. 

• Siiboliince of ronmrks l>y W J MrGee lU a mpotinx of the Hoard of Managers of tlio 
Society on .liineS, IKItri, printed at tlie instance of Itie Board. 


17 


254 WORK OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


Still Later it was observed that rivers are diverted, lakes filled 
up, and islands submerged through natural agencies ; it was also 
found that many shore lines are shifting, that some lands are 
rising and others sinking, that all continents are wasting through 
the action of rain and rivers, and that the waste of the land is 
carried into the seas ; thus geology grew up, and a time element 
was introduced even into that part of geogra})hy which deals with 
the more persistent earth-forms. In this stage geographic features 
were assumed to he changeable, and they were described not only 
in terms of form and position, hut in terms of stage or sequence. 
This ma}' he called transitional or medieval geography, though 
it comes down to the present in the books, and many geographers 
and some geographic societies have not yet risen above its plane. 

Modern students of earth-forms have observed that rivers cut 
their own valleys in definite wa}^s and at definite rates depend- 
ing on known conditions, and that eventually the running waters 
carve the land into hill and dale, mountain and plain, in a defi- 
nite way, albeit varying with altitude, structure, and other con- 
ditions. With recognition of the agencies and conditions of 
geographic change geogra[)hic history became definite, and it was 
found ])ossilde to interpret the record of ages of continent-growth 
from the geographic features, great and small, displayed by the 
continent. In this way a new science was developed; some- 
times it is called the new geograph3^ sometimes the new geology, 
sometimes geomorphologj" or geomor})hy. It matters little what 
the science is called, but it is important to remember that through 
recognition of causes and conditions geography was raised to the 
plane of science. This is modern geogra])h\"; and in this stage 
geographic features are regarded as definite products of known 
agency , and thus as definite records ot’determinate history, and de- 
scription in terms of form and position is but a means to a nobler 
end, the reading of world-history from geographic features. 

So three epochs in geographic development may be recognized, 
and their importance is none the less because some of their fac- 
tors overlap— for the overlapping of factors is one of the charac- 
teristics of development. The first was the ancient or empiric 
e{)Och ; the second was the transitional or scholastic epoch ; the 
third is the modern or scientific epoch. In its first epoch geog- 
raphj' was a meager bod}" of description of features and a crude 
art of describing ; in the second epoch it became a richer body of 
description of stages as well as features, and the art of describing 
was improved ; and in so far as it has entered into the third 


WORK OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 255 


epoch it has become a science of the earth in which the chaos of 
geograjihic features and historical stages is reduced to order, 
while the body of description is enriched in quantity and even 
more in quality, and the art of describing is greatly im])roved. 
So in modern geograj)!!}’’ each district, the continent, even the 
entire world is considered not simply as an assemblage of feat- 
ures. but as an expression of tangible forces and conditions, a 
record of the [>ast, and an index to the future, and thus the dead 
features are imbued with living interest. Briefly stated, the an- 
cient geograph}" was static, the modern geograph}’’ is essentially 
dynamic. 

With the transformation of geography from art to science its 
method changed. In the ancient and transitional epochs, when 
description was the end and aim of geographic work, men sought 
unknown lands and waters, and through their zeal and courage 
the earth was explored save for small areas in the Americas, 
Asia, Africa, and Australia, and for larger but more forbidding 
areas in the Arctic and especially in the Antarctic. Modern 
geographers in like manner seek the unknown, but their eyes 
are flxed on agencies and conditions, or on causes and effects, 
rather than on material features, and their aim is the com})lete 
reading of terrestrial history rather than the complete mapping 
of the terrestrial surface. So, while the methods blend much as 
the stages overlap, it is just to say that the early method of 
geographic work was exploration, and that the modern method 
is research. 

THE FUTURE OF GEOGRAPHY 

The transformation of geograi)hy began with the introduction 
of history and culminated with the incorporation of the principles 
of geology. Much was taken also from biology, chiefly through 
the doctrine of evolution, which afforded a rational view of 
successional relations; but less was obtained from anthropology, 
despite the fact that this branch of knowledge was the original 
contributor of history. The poverty of anthropology as a donor 
of geogra])hic knowledge is due partly to the fact that history 
was fettered by scholasticism almost from the beginning, partly 
to the fact that students hesitated long before applying thei)rin- 
eiples of evolution to human b(‘ings and institutions. Accord- 
ingly human geogra|)hy is still in the transitional stage, so far at 
least as most of the geographers and geographic institutions of the 
world are concerned. It is indeed recognized that tribes and 


256 WORK OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


peoples come and go, tiuit cities are founded and sometimes 
abandoned, that nations arise and pass away, and the statistician 
records the facts as the early geographer described forms and posi- 
tions, while the historian records the successive stages as the 
medieval geogra[)her noted stages in the wandering of an over- 
loaded river ; but the descri{>tion, he it formal or historical, is de- 
scription merely, and too rarely reaches the plane of science. 
The one thing needful in modern geograph}’’ is suggested by the 
advance made through the new geology ; it is definite recognition of 
the causes and conditions by which human progress is shaped. When 
this fundamental })rinciple is grasped, dead statistics and musty 
history will he vivified, just as the dead earth-forms have been im- 
bued with living interest, and human geography will rise to the 
])lane of science. Now, the first requisite for improvement is 
recognition of need, and the common need of geography and 
anthropology is so keenly felt by a number of students as to sug- 
gest the future, and it may clearly be foreseen that future students 
will extend and apply our ever-increasing knowledge of cause 
and effect to Imman progress. Statistics and history recorded 
in monuments and letters, paintings and gravings furnish the 
re(piisite data of form and position and succession, and may be 
molded into attractive form, I)ut nothing less than definite recog- 
nition of tlie forces by which the successive stages grew will in- 
fuse the breath of life into this body of knowledge. 

So it may be predicted that the geogra|)hy of the future will 
be devoted primarily to research concerning the forces of the 
earth, including those affecting peoi)les and institutions as well 
as those shaping land-forms and molding faunas and floras, and 
that industries, arts, commerce, laws, governments, religions, even 
civilization itself, will eventually fall within the domain of defi- 
nitely organized science and become incorporated in geography. 
Tlie prediction is easy and safe because the geography of the 
l)resent is already on the higher plane with respect to the inor- 
ganic j)art of its object-matter, is well advanced toward this plane 
with respect to the evolution of organisms, and looks up to the 
same ])lane with respect to the courses and causes of human 
organization; the fulfillment of the prediction will be simply 
the consummation 'of present progress. 

THE PURPOSES AXD METHODS OF THE SOCIETY 

It is the purpose of the National Geographic Society to increase 
and diffuse geographic knowledge growing out of research as well 


WORK OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 257 


as exploration. The more tangible instrumentalities employed 
are (1) technical meetings, (2) popular addresses, and (3) a 
monthly magazine. 

The technical meetings are devoted to the presentation and 
discussion of the results of geographic research, the announce- 
ment of discoveries made through research or exploration, the 
discussion of methods for exploration, survey, research, record, 
etc. These meetings are somewhat informal gatherings of a body 
of working geographers, bound together by common interest in 
geographic progress. Ifach contributes, either under a set title 
or in extempore discussion, to the common stock of knowledge ; 
each is fresh from field or laboratory, and his ideas are devel- 
oped by personal contact Avith the phenomena and forces of 
the earth ; collectively, these active geographers form a hive of 
busy Avorkers, constantly engaged in extending and improving 
the science of the earth, and their researches are stimulated by 
the encouragement and association found in the Society. The 
communications are illustrated, as required, by maps, sketches, 
stereopticon vieAVS, objects, apparatus, etc. The meetings are 
o]-)en to members and guests of the Societ}q but the partici]Aants 
are chiefly geographic Avorkers and teachers. The Avorking geog- 
raphers Avho maintain tlie technical meetings are for the most 
})art officers of the scientific bureaus and of the arm}'- and navy 
of the federal government; and in no other center in the Avorld 
are there so many AVorking geographers occupied in so extensive 
a field. Other contributors come from the universities and col- 
leges and the normal and high schools of the national caj)ital and 
neighboring cities ; and still others are distinguished teachers, 
explorers, or investigators in geography from other parts of the 
country and from foreign lands. So far as the official surveys 
and other geographic operations of the federal government are 
concerned, the National Geographic Society is a scientific clear- 
ing-house in Avhich the coin of knoAvledge and the securities of 
science are e.xchanged and distrilmted to mutual benefit. 

The popular meetings are devoted to (a) addresses by distin- 
guished geograpliers on topics of current interest suggested either 
by research or exploration, and (//) series of lectures on impor- 
tant phases of geograi)hic science by distinguished investigators 
or teachers. The popular lecturers are usually leading expo- 
nents of geographic thought in this and other countries. 'I'he 
addresses are illustrated usually by stereopticon vicAvs, .some- 
times by maps ami sketches or objects in addition. 'I'lie attend- 


258 WORK OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


ance at the popular meetings commonly ranges frojn 500 to 1,500, 
and comprises working geograi)hers and teachers, as well as in- 
telligent lav[)eople, and includes a considerable s])rinkling of 
youth, mainly students in universities and schools. In choosing 
popular speakers on current topics, {U’eference is given either to 
actual explorers or original investigators who are known to treat 
geography as a branch of science, and such sj)eakers arrange and 
l)resent their matter freel}% save that the excessive use of j)icture 
and anecdote is discouraged — the object is to instruct as well as 
entertain. Still greater care is given to the selection of lecturers 
for the organized courses. The first requisite is that each speaker 
shall be a recognized authority ; the second is that the treatment 
shall be scientific — tliat superficial description and pictorial illus- 
tration shall be subordinate to the exposition of relations and 
principles. The lecture courses of the last two years exemplify 
the methods of the Society. Nominalh’, they were descriptions 
and illustrations of tran.scontinental tours ; the descriptions were 
])resented b\' careful students of the several areas described, and 
the illustrations were the finest lantern slides obtainable, show- 
ing noted scenic features; yet the e.ssential characteristic of the 
lectures was the interpretation of the geograj)hic features in 
terms of agency and history in such manner that each gave a 
picture of geographic develoi)ment, while the course }’ielded a 
living panorama of world-making. When Niagara was depicted 
in sun and word picture it was not simply as one of the world’s 
wonders, but as a potent geographic agency and eloquent record 
of continent growth. To this character the success of the lecture 
courses must be ascribed. Other lecturers describe mountains 
and canyons and picturesque coasts as scenic features with in- 
different success as measured bv the interest developed ; the 
Society’s lecturers descril>ed mountain, glacier, plain, river, coast, 
and city as marking stages in a grand procession of events, and 
opened vistas through the ages with gratifying succe.ss as meas- 
ured b\' the display of interest. Thus the popular addresses 
are not designed primarily for entertainment, for the display of 
eloquence or the revelation of pictorial art, or for minute accounts 
of geogra|)hic features; they are designed for diffusing interest 
and definite knowledge concerning geographic science. 

The X.\ti()Xal Geogk.\phic ]\I.\g.\zixe is a medium of com- 
munication between geographers within and without the Society, 
and its aim is to convey new information and at the same time 
to reflect current opinion on geographic matters. In the selec- 



NAT. GEOG. MAG. 



MEETING OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY, MAY 16, 1896 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


259 


tion of articles, books for review, subjects of notes, etc, preference 
is given first to original records of personal work in exploration 
and research, and next to systematic writings tending to organ- 
ize, and thereby to advance and improve, geographic knowledge. 

Some of the most efficient instrumentalities employed by the 
Society in |)romoting geographic knowledge are more or less in- 
tangible. Through a large and widely scattered corresponding 
membership, interest in modern geography is diffused through- 
out the country ; through the public, high, and normal school 
teachers, especially in the District of Columbia and iUaryland, 
who are affiliated with the Society, a steadily increasing influ- 
ence is exerted on elementary geographic education. All the 
leading American universities are represented in the Society, 
and through them its influence on more advanced education is 
large and constantly increasing ; all the leading state and fed- 
eral surveys, geographic and geologic, are also represented, and 
in this way the surve}^s are brought into closer harmony, their 
interests are promoted, their efficiency is increased, and the ]>eople 
are benefited. In this and other ways the National Geographic 
Society strives to contribute to the scientific progress and thus 
to the material welfare of all parts of the countiy ; and there is 
evidence that its efforts are far from unsuccessful. 


EIGHTH ANNUAL FIELD MEETING OF THE NATIONAL 
GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 

The annual field meeting, held at Monticello, near Charlottes- 
ville, Virginia, on Saturday, INIay 16, was noteworthy as the first 
meeting of the National Geographic Society in the well-defined 
geographic province known as the Piedmont plateau. 

A special train left M'^ashington at D.OO a. m., carrying about 
300 members and guests of the Society. Peaching Charlottesville 
at noon, the visitors were conveyed in carriages to Monticello, the 
homestead of Thomas .Jefferson. Here they were welcomed by 
Mayor .John S. Patton, of Charlottesville, in a felicitous address. 
Pesi)onding, President Ilubbanl happily characterized Char- 
lottesville as an intellectual center of the south, and, referring 
))articularly to Monticello, eulogized .Telfer.son as statesman, citi- 
zen, geographer, educator, and man. “ .Jelferson,” he said, “ was 
a man of acts, not words. His name is better known and more 


260 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY 


revered today than wlien he died. No nobler epitaph was ever 
written on tlie tomli of any man than on that of Jefferson : ‘ The 
author of the Declaration of Independence and the founder of 
the University of Virginia.’ ” An address of welcome on the 
part of the University of Virginia by the Rector, Dr W. C. N. 
Randolph, was then presented, to which General Greely re- 
sponded. INIr Rosewell Page, of Richmond, spoke gracefully on 
behalf of the Association for the Preservation of Virginia An- 
tiquities, welcoming the National Geographic Society to Virginia, 
and describing tlie work of the Association in preserving James- 
town and other historic sites of geographic interest ; and Mr Jef- 
ferson M. Levy, owner of Monticello, in a few well-chosen words, 
extended the hospitality of the historic mansion to the Society. 
As an alumnus of the Universit}' of Virginia and a member of the 
National Geographic Society, the Rev. Dr Randolph H. IMcKim 
delivered an entertaining address on “ Jefferson at Home.” He 
described the founding of the university under Jefferson’s plans 
and tireless supervision, and explained the admirable principles 
by which the university is controlled — the high scholarship, 
the elective system, the personal-honor system of discipline, the 
j)rincii)le of religious freedom — and showed by illustration and 
exam})le tliat the breadth and soundne.ss of education in this 
institution prove Jefferson to have been far in advance of his 
times as an educator. Addresses followed on the “ Physiography 
of tlie Piedmont Plateau,” on Albemarle in Revolutionary 
Days,” and on “ Spottswood’s Expedition of 1716;” these are 
appended. After a collation the visitors attended a most agree- 
able reception at the university. 

The details of the meeting were arranged by a committee under 
the chairmanship of Dr David T. Day, including representatives 
from the municipality of Charlottesville and the University of 
Virginia, the Sons of the American Revolution, the Daughters 
of the American Revolution, the Association for the Preservation 
of Virginia Antiquities, and the Columbia Historical Society. 

The addresses of special geographic interest follow. 


GEOGRAPHIC HISTORY OF THE PIEDMONT PLATEAU 


By W J McGee 

Monticello is the northernmost knob of a low mountain ran^e ; 
it overlooks a fair and fertile plain, glorious in vernal verdure 
and the promise of a rich harvest of golden grain and purple 
grapes in autumn. The plain is not monotonously smooth ; 
here it undulates in graceful swells, there it dips into rocky river 
gorges winding across its width, and elsewhere it rises into rugged 
ranges running j^arallel with the neighboring Blue Ridge. Such 
is the Piedmont plain within view of Monticello, and such is the 
province throughout its extent from New Y"ork to Alabama; 
everywhere it is bounded on the southeast by the coastward low- 
land and on the northw'est by the Appalachian mountains, and 
everywhere it rises so high above the coastal plain that it is fitly 
called a plateau. This undulant upland, with its transverse 
riverways, its parallel ranges, and its fertile soil, is a record of 
unwritten history stretching far into the wordless past. 

Consider the rivers and the tributaries by which they are fed : 
Rivanna river runs yellow with mud ; sometimes it is clearer, 
hut after the great storm or the vernal freshet it is still more 
heavily laden with earth matter washed in from the hills; thus 
the Rivanna with its tributaries, and all the neighboring rivers 
of the province are incessant!}^ carrying the debris of the land to 
the sea. How much the Rivanna carries has not been measured, 
but the burdens l)orne by the Mississippi and Potomac and 
many other rivers have been weighed and a rate for river woi’k 
has been fixed, and thus it is known that the Rivanna, with its 
tributary mill-streams and brooks and storm rills, robs the land 
on which its waters gather of a layer of soil a third of an inch in 
average thickness during each century. This is an initial point 
in the reading of geographic history. He who desires to com- 
prehend the record of the ages must realize that the land is not 
an indestructildc thing, that the hills are not eternal, that the 
streams work ever and in time accomplish much ; he must un- 
derstand that since Jamestown was founded an inch of soil or 
rock has been removed from every average acre ahout Rivanna 

2(U 


262 GEOGRAPHIC HISTOR Y OF PIEDMONT PLA TEA U 


river and elsewhere throughout the Piedmont province. So the 
brawling brooks and turbulent rivers declare that the Piedmont 
hills and valleys are slowly but incessantly wasting. 

Consider the ways in which the waters run : Some rivers flow 
sluggishly in broad, flat-bottomed valle}'s flanked by gentle 
slopes, but the Rivanna and all its feeders and neighbors rush 
through narrow, rock-bound gorges, and on reaching the coastal 
plain cascade over huge bowlders and rugged ledges down nearly 
or quite to tide-level. Now, swift-flowing waters cut their chan- 
nels quickly, and the fact that all the Piedmont rivers, large and 
small, are incessantly corrading their beds yet are unable to 
carve them down to tide-level, proves that the land is lifting. 
This is the second of the two starting ])oints in the reading of 
geographic history; he who would learn how continents come 
to be must realize that the earth-crust is ever warping, that all 
lands are slowl}’^ rising or sinking in some of their parts, and 
that streams are living witnesses of the movement — for without 
this realization he must needs linger at the threshold of knowl- 
edge, where the forefathers unwittingly loitered before geograjdiy 
became science, and leave to others thejo}" of full understanding. 
The rate of land-lifting has not been measured, but since even 
the strongest streams are unable to cut their narrow channels 
down to tide-level, the rate must be many times the mean sur- 
face waste. Probably the Piedmont is rising about as rapidly 
as the adjacent lowland is sinking, and this has been reckoned 
at two feet j)er centur}" in New Jersey, and may be one-third so 
much in Virginia. By reason of the land-lifting the modern 
Piedmont channels are carved sharply in the rock; these chan- 
nels are but the bottoms of sharp-cut gorges 100 to 300 feet deep 
(the trenches of the recently defined Ozarkian epoch), and thus 
the gorges indicate that the lifting of the Piedmont is not the 
movement of a day or millenium merely, but has continued 
through ages. So the rushing rivers and rugged riverways of 
the Piedmont declare that the province is now, and long has 
been, rising more rapidly than the hills and valleys are wasting. 

Consider ne.xt the parallel mountain ranges: Monticello and 
the rest of Carter mountain are but a ridge of hard rock scored 
b}’ ravines and thinly mantled with soil, and Ragged mountain 
on the west. Southwest mountain on the north, and all the other 
ranges diversifying the plateau are its counterparts. The moun- 
tains are ribbed with silicious schists or quartzites or other rocks 
that resist well the work of the weather, the beating of storms, 


GEOGRAPHIC HISTOR Y OF PIEDMONT PLA TEA U 2G3 


and the cutting of streams, while the rocks underlying the fertile 
fields of the plain are softer schists easily weathered and worn 
away. Now, the development of topographic forms is an evolu- 
tion whose key-note is the survival of the hardest”; hence the 
Piedmont ranges may be (and indeed must be, since no other 
rational exi>lanation has ever been framed) regarded as remnants 
of an ancient plateau whose softer portions have been swe})t away 
b}’’ the storms and streams of the ages. These ranges rise 500 to 
2,000 feet above the undulant plain by which they are flanked ; 
it follows that not onl}'- the vertical furlongs required to raise the 
present plateau to the higher crests has been borne seaward, but 
so much more as the crests themselves may have lost ; it follows, 
too, that the time required for the waste of these thousands of 
vertical feet of rock matter at the known rate of a third of an 
inch in a century must have been vast, too vast for ready reali- 
zation. So the Piedmont ranges declare the antiquit}'’ of the 
province, and testify that the modern plateau is but the founda- 
tion of a greater one in ages gone. 

Turn now to the structure of the rocks exposed in gorge and 
mountain side: Collectively these are known as the Piedmont 
schists ; they are harder or softer, traversed by dikes, or cut by 
quartz veins, but everywhere they are highly tilted in a trend 
conforming to the extension of the province; yet the composi- 
tion of the schists indicates that they were originally marine 
sediments such as are accumulated in nearly horizontal sheets 
on the sea bottom. Now, sedimentary rocks are tilted and 
altered only by profound movements in the earth-crust which 
at the same tiine produce great mountain ranges, and the struc- 
ture of the Piedmont rocks indicates that they are the roots of a 
broad mountain range ; such is the conclusion of modern geol- 
ogy. Under this interpretation, the undulant and mountain- 
embossed plateau of the Piedmont must be regarded as the basal 
portion of a vast mass of inclined rocks of winch an unmeasured 
upper j)ortion has been planed away ; no trace of tbe original 
surface api)ears; tbe softer strata end in tbe soil and tbe harder 
strata crop out in the ranges, and both point mutely to an ancient 
surface far al)Ove ; there is nothing to indicate that originally the 
mass may not have extended ten miles upward, and tbe struc- 
ture cannot be interpreted by geology save by assuming that its 
summit was at least half a mile or a mile above the highest 
crests of today. W'liile tbe height of tbe ancient mountain 
of which the present I'iedinont is the foundation may not be 


2(54 GEOGRAPHIC HISTOR Y OF PIEDMONT PL A TEA U 


measured in the province, it may be determined roughly from 
the neighboring Appalachian province, where the sedimentary 
strata are corrugated as by compression from southeast to north- 
west into long ranges trending parallel with the provinces, and 
where the rocks are so little altered that their thickness may be 
measured accurately. The two provinces are closely related, 
differing chiefly in the greater compression suffered by the Pied- 
mont rocks ; and frequently in the mountain ])rovince, as always 
in the Piedmont, the strata expose planed edges. Now the planed 
A])palachian strata are three miles or more in vertical thickness, 
demonstrating that so much of rock matter has been carried 
away; and while the Piedmont waste may have been somewhat 
greater or a trifle less, all authorities are agreed that at least one 
and probably three or more vertical miles of rock matter have 
gone into the sea. The evidence of the two provinces is cor- 
roborated by that of a third ; for the coastal plain, to a width of 
some hundred miles and a depth of some thousand feet, is built 
of sediments demonstrably derived from the lost mountains. 
The time required for the paring down and bearing away of this 
immense mass of rock at the known rate of an inch in three 
centuries, or at any other conceivable rate, is vast, so vast as to 
tax the mind; yet he who falters at accepting the facts of mass 
or time only confesses failure to grasp this and other problems 
of modern geography. So the Piedmont rocks attest that the 
])i’ovince is but the foundation of a range, say 75 miles wide and 
3 miles high ; and the rivers and the rocks declare with one voice 
that this vast volume has been swept into the sea to build another 
province. This story of the moving of mountains is striking : 
Colorado canyon is sometimes regarded as the world’s most im- 
pressive exam})le of the w'ork of rain and river, yet the Piedmont 
is still more impressive ; for the James and Potomac and Susque- 
hanna must have traversed the ancient range in gorges no less 
profound than the Grand canyon, yet the storms and tributary 
streams stayed not when the canyons were cut, but continued 
consuming the can}mn walls until the}^ were gone, even until 
the mountains were not — the Colorado has cut a trench, the 
Piedmont rivers have carved a province. 

Thus the fertile plain of the Piedmont, the transverse river- 
ways, the parallel ranges, the subsoil rocks, teem with history 
which he who tarries a little may clearly read ; they tell that the 
land is wasting into the sea at measured rate, yet that in the 
present epoch the land-mass is lifting still more rapidly; they 


SPOTTSWOOD'S EXPEDITION OF 1716 


265 


tell that these processes wrought in the past (the long past whose 
hours are as millions of years) so persistently that they moved 
a mountain range and lined an ocean-side. The soil, too, tells 
of conquest over savages and beasts, of the blossoming of the 
wilderness at human behest, of the flowering of culture and the 
ripening of intellect, over all the fair and fertile plain wrought 
during the ages ; but this story of man’s dominion is writ clearer 
in the leaves of books than in the furrows of the fields. 


SPOTTSWOOD’S EXPEDITION OF 1716 

By Dr William M. Thornton, 

Chairman of the Faculty of the University of Virginia 

Nearly 180 years ago there was formed in the Old Dominion 
a prototype of the National Geographic Society. The governor 
of the colony, Alexander Spottswood — trained in Marlborough’s 
legions and bearing honoraide scars from Blenheim — was its 
head. Robert Beverly, the historian of Virginia ; .John Fontaine, 
the chronicler of their exploration, with Todd and Robinson and 
Taylor and Brooke and Mason, and other names famous in Vir- 
ginian annals, were on the roll. The fortunate preservation of 
Fontaine’s Journal, and its publication* in the Rev. Philip 
Slaughter’s “ History of St. Mark’s Parish,” makes it eas}'’ to 
attempt a reproduction of the story of this historic ride. 

Ten of these Virginian gentlemen, with four Indian guides and 
two small companies of rangers, assembled on August 26, 1716, 
at Germanna, on the banks of the Rappahannock, and set out 
thence to explore the passes of what they called the “ highest 
ridge of mountains.” “ For this exjiedition,” says tlie Rev Hugh 
Jones, chaplain of the House of Burgesses, “ they were obliged 
to provide a great quantity of horseshoes, things seldom used in 
the eastern part of Virginia, where there are no stones, upon 
which account the governor, upon his return, presented each of 
his companions with a golden horseshoe, with the inscription on 
one side — Sicjuvat tatmcendere montes.^^ Such was the badge of 
this early society of explorers, now called in Virginian stoiy the 
“ Knights of the Golden 1 lorseslnx;.” 

One of these little golden memorials of that far-off time would 


* Duo aoknowloilgment Ih rnnilorod to tliifi vuluultio monogriip)i. 


2G6 


SPOTTSWOOD'S EXPEDITION OF 1716 


be a highly prized treasure in our own day, when a lively interest 
in the history of our commonwealth renders precious every 
genuine relic of its heroic age; hut all of them would seem to 
have perished. In that dismal effort to endow this charming 
story of Spottswood’s ride with romantic and tragic interest, 
" The Knight of the Horse Shoe,” by Dr Wm. A. Caruthers, is 
contained the following letter, which gives authentic evidence 
of the ])reservation of one of these ornaments to a late da}'. But 
even this Caruthers himself seemed unable to secure. 

“St. JfLiEN' (near Fredericksburg), Va., Pehi-uary 25, 1841- 
“ To Dr Tf w. .1. Caruthers. 

“My Dear Sir: I have received your letter of the 5th inst., and in 
reply to it I can only say, what I said some years past to my friend, George 
Summers, on the subject of }’Our letter. I said to him that I had seen, 
in the j)Osse.ssion of the eldest hrancli of my family, a golden horseshoe 
set with garnets, and having inscribed on it the motto, 'Sic jurat transcen- 
dere monte.s,' which from tradition I always understood was presented by 
Governor Spottswood to my grandfather as one of many gentlemen who 
accompanied him across the mountains. 

“ With great respect, yours, 

“ Francis Brooke.” 

Horseshoes alone did not make up their outfit. There were 
saddle and pack horses in abundance, great store of ])rovisions, 
guns and pistols and ammunition, that they might replenish 
their commissariat with game, and with true Virginian hospi- 
tality an “ extraordinary variety of liquors,” used with generous 
and patriotic fervor. There were red wine and white, wdiisky 
and brandy, two sorts of rum, champagne, canary, cider, shrub, 
“and so forth,” says the exhausted chronicler, and they were 
dealt out with a liberal hand. On .Sejitember 6. they ascended 
a peak of the Massanutten — fancying themselves at the summit 
of the continental ridge — and standing on this terminus of their 
journey they dedicated their discoveries to His Majesty King 
George the First. After a good dinner they got the men to- 
gether, fired a volley, and drank the king’s health in cham- 
pagne; then came another volley, with the ])rincess’s health in 
Burgundy ; then another, wdth the health of the royal family in 
claret ; then a fourth, with the health of the governor, and so 
perhaps continuing till even the youngest knight of their royster- 
ing Round Table had been honored by his volley and his toast. 
Through all their expedition good fellowship and cheerful con- 
verse brightened the way. “ We arrived at a large spring,” said 


SPOTTSWOOD'S EXPEDITION OF 1716 


267 


Fontaine, “ where we dined and drank a bowl of punch.” And 
again, ‘‘ We made large fires, pitched our tents, and cut boughs 
to lie on, had good liquor, and at ten we went to sleep.” 

And 3^et our convivial geographers did not shrink from liard 
riding and hard work. Their journey followed the course of the 
Ra])pahannock to its fork, and thence pursued the Rapidau to 
its sources, whence, passing into the valley of the headwaters of 
the James, they crossed the Blue Ridge at Swift Run gap, de- 
scended the western flank, forded the Shenandoah, “ drank some 
healths,” as by invariable custom, on the other side, ascended 
the Massanutten, and there celebrated the completion of their 
journey with joyous salvos and flowing goblets. The route was 
no eas}’’ one, as it wound its way through those primeval forests, 
untrodden save by the wild bea.st and the wilder Indian. An 
average day’s journey was less than ten miles. “ We had a 
rugged way,” writes Fontaine, on the 2d of September. “We 
passed over a great many small runs of water, some of which 
were ver\^ deep and others very iniiy. Several of our com})any 
were dismounted, some were down with their horses, and some 
thrown off.” On September 3 they “ came to a thicket so tightly 
laced together that we had a great deal of trouble to get through. 
Our baggage was injured, our clothes torn all to rags, and the 
saddles and holsters also torn.” The axmen were constantly in 
request, clearing away the vines and briars to make a bridle- 
path. But cheerful sjjirits and brave hearts carried them through 
every danger. Each night they would make large fires, pitch 
tlieir tents, and after hearty feasting and cheerful talk fall asleep 
on their rough couches of green boughs, keeping always a sentry 
at the governor’s door. All their troubles were lightl\' taken. 
“ This was some hindrance,” says Fontaine of one of them, “ and 
did a little damage, but afforded a great deal of diversion.” 
Game and fish were naturally plentiful, and sport Avas thus 
added t(> the ideasures of their journe}^ From the beginning 
they had venison in abundance, which they roasted before their 
camj) fires on wooden forks and washed down with generous 
draughts of wine. Bears were killed almost daih' — often three 
in one day. On the western sloi)e of the Blue Ridge the}' saw 
“ the footing of elk and buffaloes and their beds.” 'I'nrkeys 
abounded all along their way. ^^’hen they chanced upon neither 
deer nor turkeys the}' “ ate part of one of the bears, which tasted 
very well and would be go«>d and might pass for veal if one did 
not know what it was.” While they camped on the banks of 


SPOTTSWOOD'S EXPEDITION OF 1716 


2riS 

the Shenandoah, writes Fontaine, “ I got some grasshoppers and 
fished, another and 1, and we catched a dish of fish, some perch 
and a kind of fish the}' called chuh. The others went a-hunt- 
ing and killed deer and turkeys.” There were rattlesnakes, too, 
to be killed and hornets to be fought, and at least once the bear 
objected to the sacrificial rite, attacking the man who rode after 
him and narrowly missing him ; “ he tore the things that he had 
behind him from the horse and would have destroyed him had 
he not had immediate help from the other men and our dogs.” 
So their expedition did not lack the spice of peril to season its 
hilarity. Two men fell sick with measles also and had to be 
left in camp with guards and taken up again on the homeward 
march, but all in the end went well, and after a ride of nine days 
out and four days back the gallant party reached Germanna 
once more. 

The question has sometimes been raised whether Spottswood’s 
was the first company to attempt the crossing of the Blue Ridge 
and the exploration of the regions beyond. .John P. Hale, for 
exami)le, in bis “ Transallegheny Pioneers,” states that Colonel 
Aljraham Wood, under a concession from the colonial governor 
(Richard Rennet) “ to ex{)lore the country and open up trade 
with the Indians to the west,” crossed the mountains in 1654, 
})robably at Wood’s gap — far to the south of Spottswood’s line 
of march — and again that Governor Berkeley, in 1666, dispatched 
an ex})loring party under Captain Henry Batte, who followed 
the same route as Wood. Hale offers no documentary evidence 
to support these claims and the writer has been able to discover 
none. Until thus authenticated they must rest in the limbo of 
unverified traditions, and Spottswood must wear his rightful 
laurels as the first white man who with serious purpose led a 
company across this boundary of our colonial civilization, and 
set the example so promptly followed by the hardy pioneers, 
who faced the perils of the wilderness and built their homes in 
the fair valley of Virginia. 

What, then, were the serious purposes of this earliest recon- 
naissance of the Blue Ridge? for, of course, the grave and sa- 
gacious Spottswood was not the man to prosecute such a journey 
merely that he might say at the end “ we were very merry and 
diverted ourselves with our adventures.” “ The chief aim of my 
expedition,” he writes in 1718 to the Board of Trade, ‘'was to 
satisfy myself whether it was practicable to come at the lakes.” 
What he did was to trace the Rappahannock to its source, to 


JEFFERSON AS A GEOGRAPHER 


269 


identif}’ tlie springs of the James, to “ find an easy passage over 
tliat great ridge of mountains (the Blue Ridge') hitherto deemed 
impassable,” and then he fancied the problem solved, and be- 
lieved himself within easy reacli of the streams which fed lake 
Erie and her vast sisters. AVe know now that he was misled by 
the Indians and deceived himself; that the great valle}" of Vir- 
ginia stretched before him untraversed ; that beyond lay the 
unsealed heights of the Alleghanies, and then the broad prairies 
of the Xorthwest. It was far from being such an easy matter, 
as Spottswood thought, thus to gain possession of these lakes. 
But the daring and martial spirit which such wild-wood adven- 
tures fostered in Virginian breasts was the spirit which sixty 
years later reared on American soil an everlasting altar to free- 
dom ; which thrilled Virginia’s great orator when he cried, “ I 
know not what other men may do ; but as for me, give me 
liberty or give me death ; ” which inspired Massachusetts’ noble 
statesman, when he swore to abide by the Declaration of Inde- 
pendence, “ sink or swim, live or die, survive or perish.” To 
recall this spirit and all that aided to nurture and strengthen it 
seems not inappropriate here beneath the roof of the author of 
that declaration, in sight of his cradle at Shadwell, and with the 
birthplace of George Rogers Clarke, the hei’o of Kaskaskia and 
Vincennes, at our feet; for it was left for this hardy warrior to 
perfect in battle and in march the work which Spottswood’s 
genial and jovial company had ])urposed peacefully to begin. 


JEFFERSON AS A GEOGRAPHER 

By General A. W. Greely, 

Chief Signal Officer, Eniled Slates Armij 

It is a forlorn liope that I am undertaking, to answer an unde- 
livered si)ccch, to speak but three minutes, and to say something 
of interest. I will at least say that the reasons which make 
Monticello one of America’s shrines are too well known to need 
e.xtended comment from me. As long as a love of liberty abides 
in American hearts, as long as a <lesire for knowledge stirs youth- 
ful minds, so long will the name of Thomas .lefh'rson he lu;re 
cherished. He was a man worthy of honor, whether consideiasl 
as an individual founding the University of Virginia, as a Vir- 
18 


270 


JEFFERSON A GEOGRAPHER 


ginian shedding luster on his native state, or as a citizen doing, 
in that broader national field things of greater import for his 
country and for oppressed humanity everywhere. Trite may 
have Ijeen the truths he uttered, but he voiced so apth" and 
clearly the aspirations of the people that his words yet thrill 
mankind and will in centuries to come. 

The National Geographic Society erred not in making ]\Ionti- 
cello the scene of its annual field day. Bear in mind that of all 
our Presidents Jefferson is the only one of whom we can .say, 
“ He was a geographer.” We do not know how far he aided his 
father in the surveys or draughting that resulted in the famed 
Jefferson and Fry map of Virginia, published in London in 1775, 
under Jefferys, the royal geographer, hut we can well imagine 
young Jefferson eagerly studying its western and scarcely known 
limits, then given over to the Indian and the Spaniard. Doubt- 
le.ss from such studies his comprehending mind, in a manner 
common to all men of genius, stored geographic facts and ideas 
that better fitted him for his life duties. Men of genius make all 
knowledge tributary to their particular interests and ambitions. 

In the days of travail for this nation, when to Europe America 
was a land of savages and forests, then it was that Jeffer.son did 
his first geographical wo*rk, writing “ Notes on Virginia,” to make 
known to the statesmen of France the resources and possibilities 
of a struggling colony. We know that the book was timely and 
effective, and we believe that it broadened the mind of Jefferson. 
His greatest geographic iheasure was his extra-constitutional act 
of annexation by purchase of the great territory of Louisiana. 
He realized that the only natural southern boundary of the 
United States of his day was the gulf of Mexico. To the south 
and southwest the pre.sence of Latin races meant constant irrita- 
tion and misunderstandings between them and the Anglo-Saxons. 

Louisiana acquired, Jefferson, like a good geographer, initiated 
a survey of its immense and unknown areas, sending Lewis and 
Clarke to the west, and Pike first to the north and then to the 
southwest. With unwonted wisdom and courage, even before 
the territory was formally transferred, he sent Lewis and Clarke 
on their long and perilous journey, the first as well as the most 
important of all American exi)lorations. Their three years’ 
journey taught the way to the Pacific overland, and their dis- 
covery of the upper valley of the Columhia, conjoined with 
Gray’s entrance at the mouth of that noble waterway in 1792, 
insured the title of the United States to Oregon territory in 1845. 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 


271 


Without Jefferson’s original action we might well have been 
without a foothold on the Pacific today. 

Remember that he was also foremost, if not first, in formu- 
lating plans and methods whereby the ])ublic lands should not 
lie wild and fallow, but serve their purj)ose of developing the 
nation’s power b}' passing S3^stematically and easily into the 
hands of the settler and farmer, which has proved the basis of 
our phenomenal growth and prosi)erit}\ 

While we pay tribute to Jefferson as an individual, as a citi- 
zen, as a lover of libertv, and as a President, let us not forget his 
special claim to recognition as one of the greatest of American 
geographers. 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 

By Dr G. Broavn Goode, 

Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, in Charge of the U. S. 

National Museum 

The ke}’' to the historv of Virginia in colonial and revolutionary 
days is to be found in the study of its rivers. So numerous are 
these and so wide that in their lower ]>ortions they can be crossed 
onlv in boats, and so far do they extend into the interior that in 
early days the lines of travel were almost entirel\^ along their 
courses. 

The region of the mountains was reached by roads -which were 
])arallel to the rivers, and the currents of western migration 
])assed through “gaps ” or passes in the Blue Ridge which were 
traversed by the streams which form the headwaters. 

Between the principal rivers are peninsulas which stretch forth 
toward the sea like the fingers of a great hand : Accomac, or the 
‘‘ Eastern Shore,” between the Delaware and the Sus<[uehanna ; 
the Maryland peninsula, between the Susfiuehanna and the 
Potomac; the Northern Neck, the domain of Lord Fairfax, be- 
tween the Potomac and the Ra[)pahannock ; the Gloucester 
])eninsula, between the Rappahannock and the York; the York- 
town peninsula, between the York and th(^ Potomac, and South- 
side Virginia, l»etween the James and the Dan-Roanoke. The 
Shenandoah valle\’, I>ounded hv mountains rather than river 
courses, was similarly isolated, though \)y different means. Each 
of these had a history of its own, to a certain extent distinct and 


ALBEMARLE LN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 


272 

peculiar. The people of these areas were isolated in early colo- 
nial days ; intermarried chiefly with each other generation after 
generation, and formed permanent relationships which may he 
traced even now after the lapse of two centuries. At the time of 
the Revolution there were only two roads traversing Vii’ginia 
from north to south. One passed from Philadelj^hia, by way of 
Newcastle, Del., Annapolis, Md., Alexandria, Fredericksburg, 
and Williamsburg, to the western settlements of North Carolina, 
crossing all rivers near the head of navigation exce|)t the James 
and the Roanoke. This road was serviceable only for passenger 
traffic, and for through travel was used almost exclusively by 
horsemen. The other was “ The Great Waggon Road ” from Phil- 
adelphia to the head of the Yadkin, in North Carolina. It fol- 
lowed the course of the ancient Indian road used for centuries 
before by the tribes of the east in their excursions from the 
Atlantic seal)oard to the great hunting grounds in Kentucky and 
Tennessee, and as early as 1750 was the principal line of com- 
merce between the Northern states and the Carolinas and Geor- 
gia. It traversed the entire length of the Shenandoah valley, 
crossing the Potomac some 20 miles above Harpers Ferry, near 
the mouth of the Couococheague creek. It was the position of 
the Couococheague upon this great highway which gave it such 
prominence in the days when the site of the national capital was 
being selected, and which almost led to the location of the capital 
here rather than where it now stands. 

The main artery of Virginia was the James, and it was to the 
fact that the county of Albemarle was near its head and at that 
time almost upon the western frontier that its peculiar relation 
to the events of the Revolution was due. 

Twenty-five miles east of Monticello is the great fork of the 
James river, which at that time was considered to be its head. 
Here two streams converge to form one greater one ; the northern- 
most is the Rivanna, which rises on the eastern slopes of the 
Blue Ridge, then flows by Charlottesville and through the pass 
at Monticello; the southernmost the Fluvanna, rising far to the 
west in the midst of the Alleghanies, breaking through the Blue 
Ridge at Balcony hills (close to the Natural bridge), a hundred 
miles or more above its junction with the Rivanna. This, which 
is far the more important of the two, is now called the “ Upper 
James.” 

The names of these streams are monuments to the loyalty of 
the early colonists. The James bears the name of the monarch 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DA YS 


273 


wlio ruled over England when Virginia was planted, and Rivanna 
and Fluvanna were named for his granddaughter, Queen Anne, 
for whom also were named the Rapid Anne, which we crossed 
on our way hither, as well as the South Anna and the North 
Anna, which drain the region just to the eastward. Rivanna 
w’as compounded b}’’ some enthusiast from the two words 
“ river ” and “Anna.” Fluvanna is precisely the same, except 
that he used the Latin equivalent for the word river. 

The old county of Albemarle, much larger at the beginning of 
the Revolution than now, occupied the triangle formed by the 
Blue Ridge on the west, the Fluvanna on the south, and the 
northern divide of the Rivanna basin on the north. In the 
southeastern angle of the county (which in 1777 was set aside 
in the county of Fluvanna), was the place called “ Point of 
Fork,” an important military station in the Revolution, while 
twenty miles above, on the Fluvanna or James, was old Albe- 
marle court-house, also a supply station. 

Charlottesville in 1776 had only recently become the county 
seat. A court-house and a tavern had been built, and in 1779 
a group of a dozen houses had grown up about them. A con- 
siderable number of families lived in the vicinity, recent arrivals 
from tidewater Virginia. These people lived in comfort, though 
in great simplicity, upon the vast ])lantations which they owned, 
this region being upon the very frontier. Thomas Jefferson’s 
father was one of the earlie.st settlers here, and he himself was 
perhaps the first white child horn in this region. At the time 
of his birth, in 1743, buffalo still abounded in the neighborhood. 
Ten years before a buffalo calf had been ca})tured just across the 
Blue Ridge and taken as a gift to the governor at Williamsburg. 
The Huguenot colonists at Manikintown, fifty miles down the 
James,’ ke[)t buffalo in domestication for milk and beef. A trail 
frequented by the buffalo herds crossed the Blue Ridge at Rock- 
fish gap, twenty-four miles west of Charlottesville, passed the 
Shenandoah at a ford near Staunton, and afterward over the 
ne.xt range by a passage still known as “ Buffalo Ca]),” into the 
l)eautiful valleys, then, as at present, called the “ Cow Pasture ” 
and the “Calf Pasture,” doul)tless l)ecause of the presence there 
of buffalo herds in the days when they were named. 

J'he inhabitants were still collecting bounties in tobacco for 
the wolves which they killed with their guns or enticed into pit- 
falls. The stream called “ W'olftrap branch,” near (.'harlottes- 
ville, preserves by its name the memory of those times. I have 


274 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTLONARY DAYS 


m}^self seen in tliis locality pits jxartially filled up, which Avere 
used as wolf traps not half a century ago, and have talked Avith 
a man Avhose father had seen great herds of buffalo crossing the 
Roanoke river less than a hundred miles southeast of Charlottes- 
ville, at a point still called “ Buffalo ford.” 

I mention these circumstances simply to give an idea of the 
solitude and seclusion of this region at the time of the Revolution. 
It Avas because of its very remoteness that Congress decided upon 
it, in 1779, as a j)lace for the detention of the jirisoners of Avar 
at that time quartered at Cambridge, in IMassachusetts. These 
Avere the so-called “Convention troops,” the captive army of 
Burgoyne, Avhich had surrendered to Gates at Saratoga, October 
12, 1777. This is not the ])lace to discuss Avhat seems to have 
been very had faith u[)on the part of our government, Avhich 
did not keep its ])ledges, hut retained these cai>tured troops for 
four A’ears as })risoners of Avar, notAvithstanding the agreement 
made by Gates and confirmed by Congress, that theA" should at 
once be sent to England on ])arole. 

Tavo years after the Saratoga convention they were still con- 
fined in Massachusetts. They Avere marched in the dead of 
Avinter 700 miles, from Boston to Charlottesville. The nundier 
surrendered at Saratoga Avas 5,791, of Avhom 2,412 Avere Germans 
and Hessians. The number brought to Virginia Avas, of course, 
someAvhat less, hut how much there is no means of ascertaining. 
V'e knoAV, hoAvever, that a year later their numbers had been re-, 
duced by death, desertion, and partial exchanges to about 2,100. 
They arrived in January at Charlottesville, Avhere little prej>ara- 
tion had been made to receive them. 

One Avho Avas present at the time has left the folloAving descrip- 
tion : 

As to the men, the situation Avas truly horrible, after the hard shifts 
they had experienced in their march from the Potomack. They Avere, in- 
stead of comfortable barracks, conducted intoa Avood,Avhere a feAvloghuts 
Avere just begun to be built, the most part not coA'ered over, and all of 
them full of siioav ; these the men were obliged to clear out and cover OA'er, 
to secure themselves from the inclemency of the Aveather, as quick as they 
could, and in the course of t\A'o or three days rendered them a habitable, 
but by no means a comfortable retirement. What added greatly to the 
distresses of the men Avas the AA-ant of provisions, as none had as yet ar- 
rived for the troops, and for six days they subsisted on the meal of Indian 
corn made into cakes. The person Avho had the management of every- 
thing informed us that Ave Avere not expected till spring. Never Avas a 
country so destitute of every comfort ; ])rovisions Avere not to be pur- 
chased for tendaA’s; the officers subsisted upon salt pork and Indian 


ALBEMARLE LN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 


275 


corn made into cakes ; not a drop of any kind of spirit ; what little there 
had been was already consumed by the first and second brigades ; many 
officers to comfort themselves put red pepper into water to drink by way 
of cordial. 

On the arrival of the ti’oops at Charlottesville the officers, what with 
vexation and to keep out the cold, drank rather freely of an abominable 
liquor called peach brandy, which, if drunk to excess, the fumes raise 
an absolute delirium, and in their cups sevei'al were guilty of deeds that 
would admit of no apolog}". The inhabitants must have actually thought 
us mad, for in the course of three or four days there were no less than 
six or seven duels fought. 

The officers were allotved to go into the surrounding country 
in search of c{uarters ; the Englishmen within a fixed circuit 
which extended be}mnd Richmond on the east ; the Germans 
wdtliin a similar circuit, chiefly within the Shenandoah valley 
and including Staunton. Captain Auburey has left a most in- 
teresting account of his experiences in his book of travels pub- 
lished in London in 1789. In the Memoirs of the Baroness von 
Riedesel, wdio was with the German troops, may be found a 
narrative which is even more instructive. The barracks -were 
about six miles north of Charlottesville, near Ivy creek, on a 
plantation now belonging to Mr Carr. Here the troops were de- 
tained until November, 1780, when the advance of the British 
through the Carolinas rendering their capture ])robable, they Avere 
marched northward. The British were moved to Maryland and 
thence to Connecticut; the Germans to Winchester, in the Shen- 
andoah valley. 

Some of the Germans, it is said, Avere quartered upon the 
estate of General Daniel Morgan, in Avhat is iioaV Clarke county, 
and Avere emplo3'^ed by him to build the great stone mansion, 
still standing, Avliich he named “ Saratoga ” in memory of the 
place associated Avith his triumpli and their defeat. In 1780 a 
considerable number of other prisoners cajAtured at tlie CoAvpens 
and in South Carolina Avere also brought to Alhemarle. These 
men Avere liberated by the British at the time of Tarleton’s raid. 
It is a curious fact that some Avho had married here Avhile in 
captivity deserted fnmi the British lines at Yorktown and re- 
turned here to live. It is said that some of their descendants 
still live in Albemarle. 'I'he position of Albemarle u[)on the 
frontier again gave it prondnence in 1781, when the governor 
and legislature of \drginia having be<m driven from Bichmond 
by the British invasion, (.Charlottesville became the tem[)orary 
capital of the state. 


276 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 


It should 1)6 remembered that it was only the closing scenes of 
the war Avhicli took place upon the soil of Virginia. For the 
first five years all the battles were in the northern colonies. In 
1780, however, Charleston, South Carolina, was captured, and 
the southern campaign began. The Virginia line was detached 
from the army of W^ashington, and with that of North Carolina 
went south to oppose the advance of Cornwallis. Other portions 
of the Continental Army followed. Notwithstanding the vic- 
tories of the Americans at Eutaw Springs, Kings Mountain, and 
the Cowpens and the constant check to his progress which Greene 
and his militia auxiliaries interposed, Cornwallis (strongly rein- 
forced by the tory partisans of Georgia and the Carolinas) 
slowly advanced toward Virginia. On INlay 20, 1781, he reached 
Petersburg by way of Wilmington. Another army, under Bene- 
dict Arnold, had five months before invaded the valley of the 
James, which they ascended to Petersburg and Richmond. 

Virginia was at this time in a most helpless condition. All 
the able-bodied men were in the Continental Army. Tlie militia 
were without arms, and Congress seemed unable to respond to 
their a[)peals for help. In those days i)utty had not been in- 
vented, and the glass in the windows of houses was held together 
by lead. So great was the need for bullets that the windows 
were destroyed to obtain them. Major John Pryor, commissary, 
stationed at Charlottesville, in June, 1778, wrote to Colonel 
Davies at Staunton that he had sent “by Expresses to every 
ju’obable House within forty miles extent along the Southwest 
Mountains to collect what lead can be found in the windows and 
elsewhere.” 

All southern Virginia was ravaged by a motley horde armed 
with torch and sword, who traversed it under the leadership of 
Colonel Banastre Tarleton, a dashing officer of dragoons, who 
was followed by hundreds of tory partisans from the Carolinas. 
So shameless were their depredations that an officer in Corn- 
wallis’ army denounced them as a disgrace to civilization. Henry 
Clay, at that time a boy four years of age, living near Hanover 
courtdiouse, remembered how the troo])ers desecrated the newly 
made grave of his father, who had died only a few days l>efore, 
piercing it on eveiy side with their sabers in search of hidden 
treasure. 

The British having found little in the way of booty or re.sist- 
ance at Richmond slowly proceeded up tiie James. At the Point 
of Fork, already mentioned as being in old Albemarle and 25 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DA YS 


277 


miles to the east of Monticello, the Americans liad an important 
military depot under the charge of Baron von Steuben, with a 
small bod}’- of troops. The British Colonel Simcoe, with his bat- 
talion of “ Queen’s Rangers,” was sent to dislodge him, which he 
did in a manner at the time not considered creditable to the 
American commander. 

Cornwallis also in June detached Tarleton with 180 troopers 
from his own legion, 70 mounted infantrymen, and a gang of 
Carolina tories to go to Charlottesville to capture Governor Jef- 
ferson and the legislature. Tarleton selected a secluded route 
up the valley of the South Anna by way of Louisa court-house, 
and on the morning of June 4, 1781, had approached to within ten 
miles of Charlottesville on the east. But for the courage of a man 
whose name is still remembered his plan would have been a 
perfect success. John Jouett, a scout and partisan, then 23 years 
of age, susjDected the designs of the British, cut his wa}^ througli 
the front of tlie column, and having a very fleet horse reached 
Charlottesville two hours in advance and gave warning to the 
legislature, and also got a messenger to Monticello to give warn- 
ing to Mr .Jefferson and to several members of the legislature 
who were residing at his house. This man was the grandfather 
of a citizen of Washington whom many of us personally know, 
Rear-Admiral James E. Jouett of the Navy. 

The legislature adjourned with astonishing rai)idit}'’ to Staun- 
ton, on the other side of the Blue Ridge, and only seven were 
captured. Shortly afterward they were again stampeded, and 
took to the mountains still farther west. The cause of their 
flight was somewhat curious. A company of Virginia troops 
marching northward approached Staunton, the colors flying and 
drums beating. J'he peo|>le of this region had never before seen 
soldiers in uniform and knew only the buckskin-clad rangers of 
their own region. The country people supi)Osed the advancing 
column to be that of Cornwallis and gave a false alarm. When 
Tarleton’s white-coated troo|>ers reached the crest of Monticello, 
Governor Jefferson was not there; he was safe in the woods on 
Carter’s mountain, the elevation ne.xtto Monticelloon thesouth, 
and his family were at Enniscorthy, Colonel Carter’s plantation, 
al)out six miles away. 

Visitors to .Monticello are often told that Mr Jefferson made 
his escape from the house by a sort of passage which connected 
it with outbuildings. In this stoiw there is no truth. 'I'lie cir- 
cumstances of his (light are well remembered by his descendants, 


278 


ALBEMARLE LX REVOLUTLOXARY DAYS 


and there is an interesting memorandum in Mr Jefferson’s own 
handwriting in the possession of his grandson, Dr W. C. N. 
Kandolph, of Charlottesville. Jouett’s first messenger arrived 
at Monticello at sunrise. Governor Jefferson and the members 
of tlie legislature who were with him quietly took breakfast, 
after which his guests departed for Charlottesville, and he, after 
ordering some servants to hide the household silver under the 
floor of the front porch, occupied himself in packing up his 
l>apers. About two hours after another messenger, a i\Ir Hudson, 
rode up to tell him that the British were about to ascend the 
mountain. He at once sent his family to Enniscorthy and 
ordered his saddle-horse, which was being newly shod at the 
l>lacksmith’s shop on the plantation. Carrying his papers, sword, 
and field-glass, he made his wa}' to a place on Carter’s mountain, 
whence he could see Charlottesville and the surrounding coun- 
try. After awhile, not being able to see any troops, he started 
back home, but finding that he had left his sword returned to 
get it. Looking again, he saw a large detachment of dragoons 
in the streets of Charlottesville, and then mounted his horse and 
])roceeded to Enniscorthy. In the meantime a detachment of 
troo{)S under the command of Captain MacLeod had ascended 
the mountain from the opposite side and were searching for him 
at Monticello; but for the loss of his sword he would doubtless 
nave returned home and been captured. When the troops 
reached the house, the two negroes, INIartin and Cajsar, were still 
packing away the valuables under the porch through an opening , 
made by lifting some of the ])lanks in the floor. When the sol- 
diers came up, the ))lanks were replaced, and one of the negroes 
was im]>risoned for eighteen hours. It was afterward ascertained 
that Colonel Tarleton had given positive orders to have tlie gov- 
ernor captured, if possible, but that none of his property should 
be destroyed, and this order was strictly carried out. 

After laying waste the surrounding region, Tarleton rejoined 
Cornwallis, who had now encamped upon a plantation called 
“ Elk Hill,” just below the Point of Fork, which belonged to 
Mr Jefferson. General Lafayette was at this time assembling 
his forces in the vicinity of Culi)eper court-house, about fifty 
miles to tbe northward. He was reinforced by Wa3nie’s army at 
Raccoon ford, on the Rapid Anne, very near to Cedar mountain. 
He traversed Louisa, the next county to the northeast of us, 
crossed the Xortli Anna at Brock’s l)ridge, opened a road through 
the woods, still known as the Marquis road, and passed on in 


ALBEMARLE LN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 


279 


rapid pursuit of Cornwallis, who had begun his retreat down tiie 
James. The boy-general soon drove his adversary to the end of 
the Yorktown peninsula, where Cornwallis hoped to get helj) 
from the British fleet. What happened there between tlie 30th 
of July and the 9th of October it is needless for me to relate. 

Before closing, I must refer to some of tlie historic personages 
whose lives were passed in the region which surrounds us. It 
is to be regretted that Monticello is hut a “ little mountain ” in 
fact as well as in name. If it were 1,500 feet higlier and we were 
all provided with telescopes I could show you many things of 
interest. 

Here and there along the banks of the James I might point 
out the homes of six of the seven Virginians who signed the 
Declaration of independence. We might see the old court- 
house in Hanover, twenty miles to the east, where Patrick Heniy, 
pleading in tlie famous Parsons cause in 1763, declared that the 
hurge.sses in Virginia were the only authority who could give 
force to the laws for the government of the colony. I could 
show }mu still closer, in Louisa, the home of Dabney Carr, who 
proposed in the House of Burgesses, in 1773, the plan for com- 
mittees of correspondence (to be organized for mutual ]>rotec- 
tion in tbe several colonies), which were so useful in the earliest 
days of the Revolution. We could also see old St. John’s church 
in Richmond, where, in 1775, at the meeting of the House of 
Burgesses, Heniy defied the British crown, ciying, ‘‘ Give me 
libert}’’ or give me death,” and the spot where he died, at “ Red 
Hill,” just beyond Willis mountain, to the southeast. We could 
see what we have already seen once toda}'’ fifty miles to the north- 
ward, the region of Culpeper, whence the Minutemen marched 
in 1775 with their rattlesnake flag and the motto “ Liberty or 
Death ” upon their hunting shirts, to the defeat of Lord Dun- 
more at Great bridge, with John Marshall, afterward Chief Justice 
of the United States, in their ranks. In this quarter we could 
also see tbe ancestral home of ^ladison, the cham|)ion of tbe 
Constitution. Looking to the northwest, beyond tbe Blue Ridge, 
we might see the region of the lower Shenandoah, wbencc 
marched two regiments of buckskin-clad riflemen to Poston at 
the alarm of Lexington, and the passes tbrougb which Wash- 
ington journeyed in bis early expedition to tbe westward. Over 
the Blue Ridge, not many miles away, we might s<‘ek out tbe 
birthplace of General Arthur Campbell, the hero ol' Kings Moun- 
tain, and that of John Sevier, the founder of the state of Frank- 


280 


ALBEMARLE IN REVOLUTIONARY DAYS 


lin, afterward Tennessee, the first commonwealth beyond the 
Alleghanies, and also the spot where Abram Linkhorn, grand- 
father of the President, married, lived, and was captain of a 
company of militia organized in 1776 for the defence of the 
western frontier. Still nearer, almost at the base of Monticello, 
the birthplace of General George Rogers Clarke, who by his vic- 
tory over the British and Indians at Fort Vincennes in 1781 
saved the northwest to the United States, a man the value of 
whose services to the nation at this time were second only to 
those of Washington, and away to the southward the spot where 
General Thomas Sumter was born. Our eyes, still turned to the 
west, would traverse the great frontier county of Augusta, whose 
western boundary extended, in accordance with the charter of 
1609, to the Pacific, and whose actual limits, at that time undis- 
puted, were upon the shores of the ]\Iississip})i. 

After the surrender of Cornwallis, in this region were centered 
in large degree the future destinies of America. “ The American 
states,” writes Cooke, “ were now either to set up as separate 
nations or to enter into a durable union; and the latter policy 
was strongl}^ urged by Virginia. It is necessary to state this 
fact; the “ states-right ” record of the commonwealth has pro- 
duced the impression that the sentiment of union was not strong 
in the people. The contrary is the fact. From the first the 
Virginians were the foremost advocates of union and made every 
sacrifice to effect it. 

“ To bring it about, Virginia began by surrendering a princi- 
])ality. The entii’e region beyond the Ohio, now the States of 
Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, was a part of her domain under her 
charter. Her right to it rested upon as firm a basis as the right 
of any other commonwealth to her own domain, and if there 
was any question of the Virginia title by charter she could assert 
her right b}’- conquest. The region had been wrested from the 
British by a Virginian commanding Virginian troops ; the people 
had taken ‘the oath of allegiance to the commonwealth of Vir- 
ginia,’ and her title to the entire territory was thus indisputable. 
The country north of the Ohio river was a part of Virginia under 
her original charter, remained a portion other domain when in 
ISIay, 1776, she declared herself an independent commonwealth 
before there was any union, and she herself succeeded to all the 
rights of the crown. 

“ I'hese rights she now abandoned, and her action Avas the re- 
sult of an enlarged patriotism and devotion to the cause of 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


281 


union. The articles of confederation had not been adopted by 
all the colonies; some of them still held back. They were un- 
willing to recognize the Virginia title, but would ‘accede to tlie 
confederation provided Congress would fix the western limits of 
the slates claiming to extend to the Mississippi or the South sea.’’ The 
issue was thus distinctl 3 ^ presented, the surrender of the territoiy 
and union, or its retention and disunion. Virginia decided for 
union, and (Januaiy, 1781) agreed to cede the country to the 
Federal Government. In 1783 Congress accepted her terms, and 
in 1787 passed an ordinance for the government of the territoiy.” 
Nothing now remained to complete the activities of this period 
of the Revolution but the adoption of the Constitution and the 
election of Washington to the i3residential chair. 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 

NORTH AMERICA 

Canada. At tlie annual meeting of the Hudson’s Bay Compan}'^, held 
recently in London, it was stated that the surveys of the public lands in 
the northwest having been extended to the Rocky mountains it had be- 
come necessary to define tlie western boundary of the lands of the Hud- 
son’s Bay Company. The Dominion government had contended that the 
line !-hould be placed at the limit of cultivable and grazing lands, Avhich 
meant the base of the Rocky mountains. The government had, how- 
ever, finally accepted the contention of the company that the latter’s 
one-twentieth share of the lands available for settlement extends to the 
summit of the mountains. 

Dr Robert Bell, of the Canadian Geological Survey, with Mr R. AY. 
Brock and a small party of boatmen, has renewed his explorations to the 
eastward of .James bay. Instead of following his route of 1895 by Gati- 
neau river, he journeys this summer via Keepawa and Graml lakes, 
whence he crosses the divide into the watershed of the Noddawai river, 
which he intends to explore geologically, giving especial attention to the 
valley of Bell river. Dr Bell’s exi»lorations in ISil.o jiroved that the main 
source of the Noddawai, which drains some fi0,00() square miles to the 
southeast of .lames bajq is Mattagami lake, fed by two large streams, the 
Bell and W’asawampi. TIk; Wasawampi, which enters the east end of the 
take, is interrupted about (iO miles to the southeast by its enlargement 
into the lake of the same name, where it receives its most important 
tributary, called the O’.Siillivan, from its original explorer in bSi)4. The 
most important feeder of Mattagami lake. Bell river, at its western ex- 
tremity, was discovered in bSi).: by Dr Bell. It is in the main a broad 
stream, from 20 to 40 feet deep, navigable long distances by steamboats. 
Bell reports that the waterslie<l of this river has extensive regions suitable 
forgrain raising, dairy farming, lumbering, and stock growing, and he bo- 


282 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


lieves tliat it will eventually be made accessible by railway and occupied 
by a large white population. 


EUROPK. 

t 

Gkrm.\xy. During May 1,360 ships, aggregating 139,787 tons, passed 
through the Baltic canal, the tolls amounting to 78,206 marks. Both the 
traffic and the receipts continue to fall far short of original e.xpectations. 

SwiTZERn.Axr). Tlie foreign trade of Switzerland in 1895 showed a con- 
siderable increase upon that of the preceding j'ear, the imports increasing 
from $165,000,000 to $183,000,000 and the exports from $124,000,000 to 
$132,500,000, in round numbers. The exports to the United States showed 
a large increase. 

KrssiA. The annual fair at Nijni Nov’gorod has been opened this j’ear 
at an earlier date than usual, in order to secure visits from the foreigners 
who attended the czar’s coronation at ^loscow. The exhibition covers 
over 200 acres, and while still possessing those unique features which 
have made this great Russian fair so famous, it is this year demonstrating 
in a most striking manner the enormous strides the various mechanical 
industries are making in the Russian empire. 

United Kingdom. During the year ending .July 1, 1896, 23,695 vessels 
l>aid harbor dues at the port of Liverpool. While the number was 248 
fewer than in the preceding year, the aggregate tonnage (11,046,459) 
showed an increase of 269,313. 

The total output of coal in the United Kingdom in 1895 has just been 
officially announced as 189,661,362 tons, which exceeds by 1,383,837 tons 
the output of 1S94, the highest previous record. The total recorded out- 
jnit of minerals was 201,738,.351 tons, an increase of 2,287,000 tons over 
the previous year. The number of mines worked was 3,512 and the 
number of persons employed therein 700,284. The number of quarries 
worked was 8,062, the i>roduct, mostly stone, amounting to 29,813,734 
tons. The number of employes in tliis branch of industry was 104,625, 
and the total number of persons employed in the entire mineral industry 
838,282. 

ASIA 

China. Russia is stated by the St. Petersburg NovoMi to have obtained 
absolute freedom of trade in northern China. 

Tonkin. Official notice is given that the English commissioner has 
handed over to the French authorities the district of Mongsin with the 
de])endent territories as being on the left bank of the Mekong. 

Burma. A preliminary survey has been made for a railway from the 
5Iu valley line to the Chindwin river, a distance of 70 miles. The route 
presents no serious engineering difficulties and the country to be traversed 
is densely poi)ulated. 

Afghanistan. The Amir has issued orders that none of his subjects 
sliall lie allowed to keep Kafirs as slaves, and strictly forbidding all .slave 
dealing. The Kafirs, moreover, are not to be compelled to become Mo- 
hammedans against their will. 


GEOGRA PHIC NO TES— MISCELLANEA 


283 


India. The first consignment of Kashmir silk was recently sold in 
London. Kashmir possesses excellent water power, and attention is be- 
ing called to the inducements it offers for the employment of capital. 

The Nizam of Haidarabad, one of the feudatory princes of India, has 
recently consented to the acquisition of land in his dominions by Euro- 
peans. It is expected that cotton factories and other industrial enter- 
prises will soon be established in the state. 

Japan. A treaty of commerce has been concluded between Japan 
and Belgium. 

The fisliing industr}'^ of Japan is rajiidly acquiring great importance. 
Last year Japanese fishermen caught on the Siberian coasts 600,000 salmon 
and 160,000 salmon trout. In the i.sland of Saghalien the Japanese have 
leased 84 stations ; 71 vessels were employed last year, and the catch tvas 
valued at $330,000. From the same island no less than 10,000 tons of 
edible seaweed were sent to China in 1894. 

Ti’kke.stan. It is announced that a railway will be built as soon as 
possible from Tashkend to Orenburg, with the object of connecting the 
Trans-Caspian and Samarcand line with that of Siberia. 

AFRICA 

Natal. The 400th anniversary of the discovery of Natal will occur in 
1897, and it is proposed to celebrate the occasion by an exhibition. 

Grange Free State. To the development of the gold mines of this 
state is mainly due the increase in the net profits of the Orange Free State 
railway from £1,653 in 1891 to £523,926 in 1895. 

Sierra Leone. The work of the Anglo-French Boundary Commission 
of the Sierra Leone and French Guinea frontier establishes as British 
territory a large extent of country and a number of populous towns which 
have hitherto been regarded as French. The British will also now occui)y 
the exten.sive hinterland of Sierra Leone. Except on the coast, the cli- 
mate of this region is said to be comparatively healthy, and the country 
is capable of producing rice, cotton, and tobacco in large quantities. There 
is also a considerable trade in ivory and rubber. The construction of 
roads to the interior will be commenced at once. 

AU.STRALA8IA 

Western Au.stralia. Since the beginning of 1894 the population of 
Western Australia has more than doubled. The e.xtensive railway .system 
now adopted, together with the harbor works in progress at Fremantle 
anrl other points on the coast, will facilitate and j)robably greatly ex|)and 
the export of lumber, the 8Ui)j)ly of which is jiractically inexhaustible 
and the quality excellent. 


MISCELLANEA 

In connection with the recent loss of the Unimnwnd OikIIi' oil cape 
Finisterre, attention has been called to tin* statement of the lati? I’rofessor 
Tyndall that the ehctric light is not good for lighthouse purisises. 4'here 


284 


MISCELLANEA 


seems to be no satisfactory explanation of the fact that the powerful 
Ushant light was not visible at the time of the recent disaster. 

Henry Gannett, Chief Geographer of the Geological Survey, Geographer 
of two censuses. President of the Board of Geographic Names, and author 
of several standard works, is a leading geographer of America. Born 
August 24, 184(5, he this month rounds out a half-century of fruitful life. 

A recent brochure of the “ Bulletin, Department of Geology, University 
of California,” is a description of tlie Great Valley of California, with a 
criticism of the theory of isostasy, by F. Leslie Ransome. As indicated 
by the initial paragraph, the memoir is primarily a critical discussion of 
tlie well-known geologic doctrine enunciated by Dutton — the doctrine that 
the earth-crust is in a state analogous to that of hydrostatic equilibrium, 
and that it is warped or deformed by transfer of load through the action 
of streams, as, for example, from the Rocky mountains into the gulf of 
Mexico. The author opposes this doctrine and appeals to the facts of the 
Californian valley for support. The memoir is scholarly and the critical 
remarks are gratifyingly courteous, and it is notable as a careful review' 
of the literature pertaining to isostasy. No geographer concerned with 
the study of the greater terrestrial movements can fail to find it of use. 
The memoir forms pages 371-428 of volume I of a highly creditable 
series of publications emanating from the University of California “at 
irregular intervals in the form of separate papers * * * which embody 
the results of research by some competent investigator.” Several of these 
memoii's, especially those by Professor Andrew' C. Lawson, are note- 
worthy contributions to scientific geography. 

In his letter to the National Geographic Society on the occasion of its 
recent field meeting at Charlottesville, Va., Dr W. C. N. Randolph, of the 
University of Virginia, called attention to the extraordinary productive- 
ness of that region in resi)ect of illustrious men. “Across the river in 
front of us,” he said. “Jetterson was born ; around its turn is the birth- 
l)lace of General Rogers Clarke, who, through Virginia, gave to the Great 
Republic the Northwest. Over there, a short mile and a half away, 
lived Monroe; a mile west of the city lived William Wirt, the famous 
lawyer, oiator, and author, while seven miles further w'est Meriw'ether 
Lewis, of the Lewis and Clarke e.xpedition, was born. Down these “ little 
mountains,” as the old people love to call them, w’as born the game-cock 
of the Carolinas, General Sumter; further on dwelt James Madison and 
Zachary Taylor, the latter the hero of Ihiena Vista, and both of them 
Presidents of the United States. In the same county were born the Bar- 
bours, one of them one of the most honored of our representatives at the 
Court of St. James, the other a distinguished member of the Supreme 
Bench. FurtheH' on, in Fauquier county, was born John Marshall, the 
greatest of our Chief Justices. He took the frazelled threads of American 
jurisprudence and twisted them into a rope .so strong that it has never 
been broken, so flexible that it has never been oppressive, so sound that 
at the end of nearly a hundred years it shows no evidence of deca\'.” 
He thought he might be pardoned if he requested that, in making up 
the li.st of i)roducts of the beautiful Piedmont plateau, account might be 
taken of the many illustrious men to whom it has given birth. 


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numbers among its contributors the follo^Ying well-known writers on the different 

branches of geographic science: 


Mr. Cyrus C. Adams, New York. 

Dr. Cyrus Adler, Smith.soiiiau Institution. 

i\Ir. Marcus Baker, U. S. Geological Survey, 

Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. S. N. 

Dr. Francis Brown, Union Theol. Seminary. 

Hon. Jefferson B. Browne, Collector of Cus- 
toms at Key West. 

Dr. E. L. Cortliell, C. E., New York. 

Dr. Elliott Coues. 

Hon. William E. Curtis, ex-Director of the 
Bureau of the .\nierican Republics. 

IMr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
American Ethnology. 

Dr. Charles W. Dabney, Jr., .•Assistant Secre- 
tary ot Agriculture. 

Dr. Wm. H. Dali, Smithsonian In.stitution. 

Dr. George Davidson, President of the Geo- 
graphical Society of the Pacific. 

Mr. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological Surve}'. 

^Ir. Wm. M. Davis, Professor of Ph}’sical Geog- 
raphy in Harvard University. 

Dr. David T. Daj', Chief of the Div. of Mining 
Statistics and Technology, U. S. Geol. Sur 

Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Hon. John W. F'oster, ex-Secretary of State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Geographer, U. S. 
Geological .Survey and nth Census. 

lUr. G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Surve 3 ^ 

Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief Signal 
Officer, War Department. 

Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
National Geographic Society. 

Dr Mark W. Harrington, President of the Uni- 
versity of the State of Washington. 

Uieut. Everett Hayden, U. S. N., Secretarj^ of 
the National Geographic Society. 

Mr. Robert T. Hill, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Wm. H. Holmes. Dir. of the Dept, of An- 
thropology, Field Colum. Museum, Chicago. 

Dr. Emil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. .Sheldon Jackson, U. S. Commissioner of 
E<Lucation for Alaska. 


Mr. Willard D. Johnson, U. S. Geol. Survey. 

Mr. Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 

Mr. George Kennan. 

Prof. William Uibbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 

Prof. E. McClure, University of Oregon. 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
nology. 

Mr. John E. McGrath, U. S. Coast Surve}'’. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S. N. 

Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Mass. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Ornithologist and Mam- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John H. Mitchell, U. S. S. 

Prof. W. L- Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. Frederick H. Newell, Chief Hj’drographer 
of the U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Lieut. Roljert E. Peary, U. S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. >S- 

Mr. William PI. Pickering, Professor of Astron- 
omj’ in Plarvard University. 

Major John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of American Ethnolog^^ 

Prof. W. H. Powell, Superintendent of Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Hon. John R. Procter, President of the U. S. 
Civil Service Commission. 

Mr. Israel C. Russell, Profe.s.sor of Geology in 
the Univer.sit}' of Michigan. 

Dr. N. S. Shaler, Professor of Geology in Har- 
vard Universit)'. 

Commander Charles D. Sigsbee, Hydrograplier 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Nav}' Dept. 

Mi.ss Eliza Ruhaniah Scidmore. 

Commander Z. L. Tanner, U. ,S. N. 

Mr. P'rank Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U.S. 
Geological Survey'. 

Mrs. Fannie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


PRINCIPAL CONTENTS OF RECENT NUMBERS. 


JANUARY. — Ru.ssia in Europe, with map, Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard ; The .Arctic Cruise 
of the U. S. Revenue Cutter “Bear,” with illustrations. Dr. Sheldon Jack.son ; The 
Scope and Value of Arctic Exploration, Gen. A. W. Greely, U. ,S. A. 

FEBRUARY. — Venezuela: Her Gf>vernment, People, and Houndar^-, with maj) and illustra- 
tions, William IC. Curtis ; The Panama Canal Route, with illustrations, Pn>f. Robert T. 
Hill ; The Tehuantej)ec Ship Railwaj’, with maps, E. L. Cortliell, C. E.. LL. D. ; The 
Present State of the Nicaragua Canal, Gen. W. Greelv : Exjilorations by the Bureau 
of American Ethnologv-, W J McGee, ina/> of Hie Orinoco vaU'-" 'HuKv'iiff territory 

drained by that xvalcrway and its bearing .on the I’eneziielan Hoiindai '’>es/ion. 

MARCH. — The So-Calletl “Jeannette Relics,” Prof. Wm. II. Dali ; Nauseii ■ ar Expedi- 
tion, Gen. W. Greely; The Submarine Cables of the World, Gusuue 11 -rrle ; The 
Surve)’ and Subdivision of Indian Territory, with map and illustraliou, lUmry Gannett ; 
“Free Burghs” in the United States, James II. Blodgett, .llso chart, fg .v j;o inches, 
showing Submarine Telegraph Cables of' the World and Principal t.anit Lines. P'utt- 
page portraits of Dr. Nansen and Trof. Win. II. Datt. 

APRIL. — Seriland, with map and illu.stration, W J McGee and Willard I). Johnson; The 
Olympic Country, with map. the late S. C. Gilman ; The Discovery of Glacier Bay, 
Alaska, liliza Ruhamah Scidmore ; Hydrography in the United .States, h'rederick II. 
Newell ; Recent Triangulation in the Ca.scades, S. S. Gannett ; The Altitmle of Ml. 
Adams, Washington, Edgar McClure. 

may. — .A frica since r88.S, with special reference to South Africa and .Al)yssiiiia, with ma]), 
Hon. (rardinerG. Hubbanl ; Fundamental Geograjihic Relation of the Three .Americas, 
with map. Prof. Robert T. Hill ; The Kansas River, .Arthur P. Davis. . Itso portrait of 
Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, IVesident of ■ the National Geographic .Society. 


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THE SEPTEMBER NUMBER 


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Ti NATli'AL GEIIGIUPHIC mkWl 


will contain an illustrated article on the 

RECENT EARTHQUAKE WAVE 

ON THE COAST OF JAPAN, 

By miss ELIZA RUHAMAH SCIDMORE, 

who was near the scene of the catastrophe at the time of its 

occurrence ; 


ALSO 

SPANISH TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS: THEIR 
FULLNESS AND PRECISION 

(As illustrated in Arid America), 

Bv PROFESSOR ROBERT T. HILL, 

Of the U. S. Geological Survey ; 

AND . THE 

WEATHER BUREAU 

RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM, 

By professor WILLIS L. MOORE, 

Chief of the Weaiher Bureau. 


JUDD & DBTWetLER, PRINTERS, WASHINGTON, D. C. 


yol. V 11 




NO. 


The 


National Geographic 


Magazine 



ELIZA RtJHAMAH SCIDMORE 


285 

290 


291 


With map and illustrations. 

THE RETURN OP DR NANSEN 

DESCRIPTIVE TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA. 

ROBERT T HILL 

THE WEA.THER BUREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM. 

WILLtS L. MOORE 

CHARLES FRANCIS HALL AND JONES SOUND. 

MINERAL PRODUCTIONS IN THE UNITED STATES. 

REPORTS OP SEALING SCHOONERS FROM TUSCARORA DEEP. 

ELIZA RUHAMAH SCIDMORE 
Geographic Notes, p. 312; The American Association, p 315; Death of G. Brown 
Goode, p. 316 

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THE 


National Geographic Society 

ORGANIZED, JANUARY, 1888 


President 

GARDINER G. HUBBARD 


MARCUS BAKER 

william; h. dall 

G. K. GILBERT 


Vice-Presidents 

A. W. GREELY 
C. HART MERRIAM 
HERBERT G. OGDEN 


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CHARLES J. BELL 

Recording Secretary Corresponding Secretary 

EVERETT HAYDEN HENRY GANNETT 


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THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 
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NAT. GEOG. MAG. 





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NAT. GEOG. MAG. 





THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

VoL. VII SEPTEMBER, 1896 No. 9 


THE RECENT EARTHQUAKE WAVE ON THE COAST 

OF JAPAN 

By Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore 

On the evening of June 15, 1896, the northeast coast of Hondo, 
the main island of Japan, was struck by a great earthquake ivave 
{tsunami), wliich was more destructive of life and property than 
any earthquake convulsion of this century in that empire. The 
whole coastline of the San-Riku, the three provinces of Rikuzen, 
Rikuchu, and Rikuoku, from the island of Kinkwazan, 38° 20' 
north, northward for 175 miles, was laid waste by a great wave 
moving from the east and south, that varied in recorded height 
from 10 to 50 feet. A few survivors, who saw it advancing in the 
darkness, report its height as 80 to 100 feet. With a difference 
of but thirty minutes in time between the southern and northern 
points, it struck the San-Riku coast and in a trice obliterated 
towns and villages, killed 26,975 people out of the original popu- 
lation, and grievously wounded the 5,390 survivors. It washed 
away and wreckefl 9,313 houses, stranded some 300 lai’ger craft — 
steamers, schooners, and junks — ami crushed or carried away 
10,000 fishing boats, destroying property to the value of six mil- 
lion yen. Thousands of acres of arable land were turned to 
wastes, projecting rocks offshore were broken, overturned, or 
moved hundreds of }airds, shallows and bars were formed, and in 
some localities the entire shoreline was changed. 

They were all seafaring communities along this coast strip 
and the fisheries were the chief industry. J'he shipment of sea 
j)roducts to the great ports was the main connection with the 
outer world. A high mountain range bars communication with 


19 


286 RECENT EARTHQUAKE WAVE ON COAST OF JAPAN 

the trunk railway line of the island, and this picturesque, fiord- 
cut coast is so remote and so isolated that only two foreigners 
had been seen in the region in ten years, with the exception of 
the French mission priest, Father Raspail, who lost his life in 
the flood. With telegraph offices, instruments, and operators 
carried away, word came slowly to Tokjm, and with 50 to 100 
miles of mountain roads between the nearest railwa}' station and 
the seacoast aid was long in reaching the wretched survivors. 
When adequate idea of the calamity reached the capital and the 
cities, men-of-war, soldiers, sappers, surgeons, and nurses were 
quickly dispatched, and public s^uupathy found expression in 
contributions through the different newspapers, amounting to 
more than 250,000 yen, for the relief of the injured. The Japanese 
journalist and photographer were quickly on their way, and the 
vernacular press soon fed the public full of horrors, }'et the first 
to reach the scene of the disaster was an American missionary, 
the Rev. Rothesay Miller, who made the usual three days’ trip 
over the mountains in less than a day and a half on his Ameri- 
can bicycle. 

There were old traditions of such earthquake waves on this 
coast, one of two centuries ago doing some damage, and a tsunami 
of fort}’^ years ago and a lesser one of 1892 flooding the streets of 
Kamaishi and driving })eople to upper floors and the roofs of 
their houses. The barometer gave no warning, no indication 
of any unusual conditions on June 15, and the occurrence of 
thirteen light earthquake shocks during the day excited no com- 
ment. Rain had fallen in the morning and afternoon, and with 
a temperature of 80® to 90° the damp atmosphere was very op- 
pressive. The villagers on that remote coast adhered to the old 
calendar in observing their local fetes and holidays, and on that 
fifth day of the fifth moon had been celebrating the Girls’ Festival. 
Rain had driven them indoors with the darkness, and nearly 
all were in their houses at eight o'clock, when, with a rumbling 
as of heavy cannonading out at sea, a roar, and the crash and 
crackling of timbers, they were suddenl}'^ engulfed in the swirl- 
ing waters. Only a few survivors on all that length of coast saw 
the advancing wave, one of them telling that the water first re- 
ceded some 600 yards from ghastly white sands and then the 
Wave stood like a black wall 80 feet in height, with phosphor- 
escent lights gleaming along its crest. Others, hearing a distant 
roar, saw a dark shadow seaward and ran to high ground, cry- 
ing “Tkunaiju tsunami!^' Some who ran to the upper stories 


NAT. GEOG. MAG. 


VOL. VII. 1896. PL. XXXII 




SCENES ON THE COAST AT KAMAISHI, JAPAN. JUNE 15, 1896 





RECENT EARTHQUAKE WAVE ON COAST OF JAPAN 287 


of their houses for safety were drowned, crushed, or imprisoned 
there, only a few breaking through the roofs or escaping after 
the water subsided. 

Shallow water and outl}dng islands broke the force of the 
wave in some places, and in long, narrow inlets or fiords the 
giant roller was broken into two, three, and even six waves, that 
crashed upon the shore in succession. Ships and junks were car- 
ried one and two miles inland, left on hilltops, treetops, and in 
the midst of fields uninjured or mixed up with the ruins of 
houses, the rest engulfed or swept seaward. Where the wave 
entered a fiord or bay it bore everything along to the head of the 
ravine or valley and left the mass of debris in a heap at the end. 
Where the coast was low and faced the open ocean the wave 
washed in and, retreating, carried everything back with it. Many 
survivors, swept away by the waters, were cast ashore on out- 
hung islands, or seized bits of wreckage and kept afloat. On the 
open coast the wave came and withdrew within five minutes, 
while in long inlets the waters boiled and surged for nearly a 
half hour before subsiding. The best swimmers were helpless 
in the first swirl of water, and nearl}^ all the bodies recovered 
were frightfull}’- battered and mutilated, rolled over and driven 
against rocks, struck b}^ and crushed between timbers. The force 
of the wave cut down groves of large pine trees to short stumps, 
snap|)ed thick granite posts of temple gates and carried the stone 
cross-beams 300 yards away. Many jjeople were lost through 
running back to save others or to save their valuables. 

One loyal schoolmaster carried the emperor’s i)ortrait to a place 
of safety l)efore seeking out his own family. A half-demented 
soldier, retired since the late war and continuall}^ brooding on 
a possible attack l)v the enemy, became convinced that the first 
cannonading sound was from a hostile fleet, and, seizing his 
sword, ran down to the beach to meet the foe. One village officer, 
mistaking the sound of crashing timl)ers for crackling flames, ran 
to high ground to see where the (ire was, and thus saved his life. 
Another village officer, living on the edge of a hill, heard the 
crash and slid bis screens open to look upon foaming waters 
nearly level with bis veranda. In a moment the waters dis- 
appeared, leaving a black, cm jjty level where the populous village 
had been a few minutes before. Four women clung to one man, 
seeking to escape to liigli ground, and their combined weight 
resisting the force of the receding wave tlie_y were all saved. Tlie 
only survivors of another village were eight men who had been 


288 RECENT EARTHQUAKE WAVE ON COAST OF JAPAN 


j)laying the game of “ go ” in a hillside temple. Eight children 
floated away and left on high gi’ound were believed to be the 
only survivors of one village, until one hundred people were 
found who had been borne across and stranded on the opposite 
shores of their bay. One hundred and fifty people were found 
cast away on one island oftshore. From two large villages on one 
hay only thirty 3 'oung men survived, hard^'-, muscular young 
fishermen and powerful swimmers, yet in other places the strong- 
est perished, and the aged and infirm, crij)ples, and tin}^ children 
were miraculousU’^ ])reserved. The wave flooded the cells of 
Okachi prison and the jailers broke the bolts and let the 195 
convicts free. Onlv two convicts attempted to escape, the others 
waiting in good order until marched to the high ground b}”^ their 
keepers. The good Pere Rasi)ail had just reached Kamaishi 
from Ids all-day walk of 50 miles over tlie mountains and en- 
tered his inn, when his assistant called to him from the street. 
The ])riest came to the veranda, but in an instant the water 
was upon him. He was seen later, swimming, but evidently 
was struck by timbers or swej)t out to sea, as his body has not 
been recovered. Ja])anese men-of-war cruised for a week off 
Kamaishi, recovering bodies daily. The Japanese system of 
census enumeration is so complete and minute that the name of 
every person who lost his life was soon known, and the Official 
Gazette was able to state that out of a population of 6,529 at 
Kamaishi 4,985 were lost and 500 injured, while 953 dwellings 
and 867 warehouses and other structures were destroyed or car- 
ried away, and 176 ships carried inland or swept out and lost. 

The survivors were so stunned with the appalling disaster that 
few could do anything for themselves or others. With houses, 
nets, and fishing-boats carried away and the fish retreating to 
further and deeper waters, starvation faced them, and, the great 
heat continuing while so many bodies were strewn along shore 
and imprisoned in ruins, the atmosphere fast became poisonous. 
The north-coast peojde are o))posed to cremation and insisted 
on earth burial, which dela}'ed the disposal of the dead and aug- 
mented the danger of pestilence. Disinfectants were sent in 
quantity, and the work of recoverv and burial was so pressing 
that soldiers were put to it after all available coolies had been 
impressed. The Red Cross Society, with its hospitals and nurses, 
had difficulty in caring for all the wounded, the greater number 
of whom, besides requiring surgical aid, were suffering from 
pneumonia and internal inflammations consequent upon their 


SCENE ON THE COAST OF THE ISLAND OF HONDO, JAPAN, AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE WAVE OF JUNE 15, 1896 


I 


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> 


CD 

m 

O 

O 


> 

O 



VOL. VII, 1896, PL. XXXIII 



RECENT EARTHQUAKE WAVE ON COAST OF JAPAN 289 


long exposure in wet clothing without shelter and from the brine, 
fish oil, and sand breathed in and swallowed while in the first 
tumult of waters. Besides the generous relief fund subscribed 
by the people, the government has made large assignments from 
its available funds and sent stores of provisions, clothing, tools, 
etc., to the 60,000 homeless, ruined, bereaved, and starving people 
of tlie San-Riku coast. 

The wave was plainly felt two hours later on the shores of the 
island of Yesso, 200 miles north of the center of disturbance on 
the San-Riku coast, the water advancing 80 feet beyond high-tide 
mark on the beach at Hakodate. Eight hours later there was a 
great disturbance of the waters on the shores of the Bonin islands, 
more than 700 miles southward, the water rising three or four 
feet and retreating violently. Six hours later, on the shores of 
Kaui, the most northern of the Hawaiian islands, distant 3,390 
miles, the waters receded violently and washed on shore in a 
wave some inches above the normal height. 

The plainest inference has been that the great wave was the 
result of an eruption, explosion, or other disturbance in the bed 
of tbe sea, 500 or 600 miles off the San-Riku coast. The most 
]3opular theory is that it resulted from the caving-in of some part 
of the wall or bed of the great “ Tuscarora Deep,” one of the 
greatest depressions of the ocean bed in tbe world, discovered in 
1874 by the present Rear-Admiral Belknap, U. S. N., while in 
command of the U. S. S. Tuscarora, engaged in deep-sea surveys. 

The “ Tuscarora Deep ” is nearly five and one-third statute 
miles in depth, being exceeded, so far as known, onl}’’ b}^ the still 
more profound de[)ths discovered last year in the South Pacific 
by Commander A. F. Balfour, of the British Navy.* 

That disturbances were taking ])lace in this tremendous abyss 
was again suggested at six o’clock on the morning of J uly 4, wlien 
the Canadian Pacific Railway Comi)any’s mail steamer Empress 
of Japan, sailing directly over it in a smooth sea, was shaken as if 
a propeller blade had been lost or the ship had struck an ob- 
struction. Every one was roused by the })eculiar shock, but no 
visil)le cx])lanation was furnished. The destructive wave and 
this incident together should stimulate further investigation of 
this dangerous, bottomlc.ss pit of the Pacilic ocean, whieh owes 
its discovery to United States explorers by deei)-sea soundings. 


*.See Nat. Gkoo. .Mag., voI. vii, p. ‘ 26 ' 2 . 


THE RETURN OF DR NANSEN 


The National Geographic Magazine rejoices in the safe return 
and in the extensive geographic explorations of Dr F. Nansen, 
Captain O. N. Svendrup, and their companions in the Fram. 
Nansen entered the jiack in September, 1893, in 78° 50' north, 
134° east, to the northwest of the New Siberian islands. This 
drift was in the same general direction as that of De Long in the 
Jeannette. The Fram liarel y escaped destruction by the action of 
the ice, but it reached by IMarch, 1895, 83° 59' north, 102° west. 
At this point Dr Nansen, with one companion, reached, April 7, 
1895, by dogs and sledge over the frozen sea. 8G° 14' north and 
about 95° east, a point 2° 51' farther north than was made by 
Lockwood and Brainard,of the Greel}' expedition. Nansen for 
some unexplained reason did not return to the Frnm, which was 
left in command of Caiitain Svendrup, but started for Spitzbergen 
via Franz Josef land. He reached, August 6, 1895, in 81° 38' 
north, 63° east, outlying ice-capped islands of the Franz Josef 
archijielago, and wintered in the vicinity. Subsisting on bear and 
walrus meat, he almost miraculously met the Jackson-Harms- 
worth party wintering on Franz Josef land and was brought 
safely by them to Vardo. Nansen’s experiences were astound- 
ing in character, and his safe return results from a combination of 
courage, endurance, and self-helpfulness, supplemented by good 
fortune, unequaled in the annals of Arctic exploration. 

Svendrup’s return with the Fram happily ends the fears that 
were entertained for the safety of the vessel on Nansen’s return. 
It would seem, in the absence of definite information, that the 
Fram drifted to the northward of Franz Josef land and Spitz- 
bergen and came into open water to the northwest of the latter 
land. No land was discovered to the north of the eighty-second 
parallel, and the archipelago discovered by the Greely expedi- 
tion remains the most northerly land known. The very deep 
water, 2,185 fathoms, found by Svendrup indicates an extension 
to the north and east of the great deep existent between Spitz- 
bergen and Greenland, and renders it improbable that any ex- 
tensive land lies to the north of Franz Josef land or Spitzbergen. 

Thus by boldness and energy, rivaling those qualities of their 
Scandinavian ancestors, have Nansen and Svendruj) rolled back 
for admiring mankind, to an extent unequaled in this age, the 
Ultima Thule of the North. 


290 


DESCRIPTIVE TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH 

AMERICA* 


By Robert T. Hill, 

United States Geological Survey 

“ Did it ever occur to the reader how poverty-stricken the (I will not 
say English exactly, but) Anglo-American language is in sharp, crisp, 
definite topograpliic terms ? English writers seem to have gathered up 
a moderate number of them, but they got most of them from Scotland 
within the past thirtj' or forty years. They are not a part of our legiti- 
mate inheritance from the mother country. In truth, we have in this 
country some three or four words which are available for duty in express- 
ing several scores of topographic characteristics. Anything that is hol- 
low we call a valley and anything that stands up above the surrounding 
land we call a hill or mountain ; but the Spanish — or Mexican, if you 
prefer — is rich in topographic terms which are delightfully expressive 
and definite. There is scarcely a feature of the land which repeats itself 
with similar characteristics that has not a pat name ; and these terms 
are euphonious as well as precise. They designate things objective as 
happily and concisely as the Saxon designates things subjective ; there- 
fore we use them.” — Major C. E. Dutton, “ Mount Taylor and the Zuili 
Plateau,” pp. 126-127, Sixth Annual Report, U. S. Geological Survey, 
1884-’85. 

An apj)ropriate generic name should be provided for every 
possible form of the earth’s surface, so that when referred to it 
may be as readily recognized as are the parts of a building in 
an architectural description. The nomenclature of geographic 
processes has far outstripped that of topographic forms, so that 
pages of literature are burdened with sentences descriptive of 
ordinary unnamed features of the landscape that should be 
expressed by simple designations. The English language is 
exceedingly sterile in topographic adjectives and substantives, 
and such words as we possess are ambiguously applied to many 
different specific forms. 

All topograi)hic forms may be reduced to four distinct generic 
categorie.s — eminences (protuberances), plains, valleys, and de- 
clivities. Each of these has variations ])roductive of a large 
number of specific forms, ))assing one into another. 

• Pre|mrc<l for n report to ttio Director of ftie U. .S. OooloKiciil Survey on tlio geonru- 
phy of tlie Texus - New Mexieun region of tlie Uniteil Stiitos. 

Ml 


292 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


The English pioneers gave to the tojDographic features of 
America only a few names. Eminences they described as moun- 
tains, hills, knobs, chains, ranges, lone mountains, and lost 
mountains. They called valleys lake valleys, l>asin valleys (a 
very ambiguous term), and river valleys. I cannot at present 
recall any established English words for varieties of plains. The 
words we use for these — plateaux, savannas, etc. — are all foreign 
terms. For declivities we have slope, bluff, terrace, escarpment, 
bank, etc. Possibl}" the paucity of descriptive words for plains is 
due to the fact that in England, where the English language 
developed, plains are not conspicuous topographic features. 

In the portions of America settled or explored by the Spanish 
race there is a remarkable stock of appropriate descriptive topo- 
graphic terms, as can be ascertained by studjdng and translat- 
ing the names upon any of the maps of southwestern United 
States. Although unfamiliar to eastern ears, these words are as 
euphonious as some of those invented by modern geographers. 
They also bear the stamp of priority, for they were probably ap- 
})lied to the features they now adorn before the English settled 
on the North American continent, and the}' have since been in 
constant use by the people of the region. They appear also on 
]niblished maj)S, and nearly every word used in this pa])er is 
taken from some ])rinted map of New Mexico, of the adjacent 
border states of Mexico, or of Trans-Pecos Texas. 

It should, perhaps, be stated that the ])resent article is not 
written from the standpoint of a philologist, and may not even 
bear the close criticism of a linguist. It is an outgrowth of the 
writer’s hal)it of looking up the meaning of names encountered 
in his travels in S}>anish America. Finally, on taking stock of 
tlie words collected, he has found that they cover nearly every 
possible topographic form in the region. These terms, as applied 
in America, may not exactly coincide in meaning with Castilian 
usage, but they are now Americanized and in daily use. They 
are now submitted to the criticism of intelligent geographers. 
INIany of them may seem unnecessary and even useless, but there 
are some admirable ones that will survive and that in their an- 
glicized form must be adopted in any scheme of geographic 
nomenclature which would seek to have an appropriate general 
term for every possible topographic form. 

NAMES APPLIED TO PROTUBERANCES (MOUNTAIN FORMS) 

The following names of protuberances above adjacent regions. 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


293 


known to us as mountains and hills, are preserved in the carto- 
graphic literature of Spanish America: 


Eminencia, 

Picacho, 

Tinaja, 

Montana, 

Pena, 

Sandia, 

Cerro, 

Candela, 

Pelado, 

Cerrillo, 

Pelon, 

Pico, 

Loma, 

Peloncilla, 

Cumbre, 

Lomita, 

Teta, 

Cuchilla, 

Cordillera, 

Tejon, 

Chiquito. 

Sierra, 

Huerfano, 



Eminencia. — A generic term for any kind of mountainous or hilly pro- 
tuberance. 

Montana. — A generic term for mountain, exactly synonymous with the 
English word mountain as used in distinction from hill. 

Cerro. — A single eminence, somewhat intermediate between our con- 
ceptions of hill and mountain. It is an eminence of too great an altitude 
to be called a hill, but yet too low to be called a mountain. 

Cerrillo. — The diminutive of cerro ; printed cerrito on many maps. 

Loma. — A hill ; a rising ground in the midst of a plain. 

Lomita. — A small loma. 

Certain terms applied to mountains convey an idea of their 
arrangement : 

Cordillera. — This term is used in a collective sense for a mass of moun- 
tains as distinguished from single mountain summits. For illustration, 
the Rocky mountain region of the North American continent, or, as called 
by others, the cordilleran region, is divisible into a number of areas where 
the crests are numerous and compactly crowded. These areas are sepa- 
rated from one another by intervals of a less mountainous character. 
The areas of multiple masses are cordilleras. For instance, the eastern 
front of the Rocky mountain region is composed of the IMontaiia, Colo- 
rado, Guadalupe, and Mexican (eastern Sierra Madre) cordilleras. 

Sierra. — This name is u.sed in the singular for a mountain mass, range, 
or block of elongated outline, usually with a serrated crest. A group of 
sierras, such as any Mexican Sierra INladre, may constitute a cordillera. 

The following words are descriptive of the forms of single 
mountains or hills : 

Piritrho. — .\ peake«l or pointed eminence. 

J’ena (the end of the nii/.zen-mast).— A needle-like eminence. Exam- 
ples, I’ena Osciira, New Mexico; Pefia Colora<lo, Texas. 

CnndrluH (candles). — .V collection of pefia summits. Example, Sierra 
Candela, of the state of Coahnila, Mexiccj. 

J^i'lon. — A bare conical eminence, having the <nitline of a sugar loaf. 

J^eloncilla . — The diminutive of pelon. Examjile, Brackett sheet, Tt'xas. 

'J'eta . — A solitary, circular mountain having the form of a woman’s 
breast. The French word mnnuion is also used synonymously for tela in 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPAXl)iH AMERICA 


2!t-J 


the ifitlimus of Panama, generally for a lower eminence, however. Teton 
is used in the United States and Canada. 

Tejon (disk-shaped) and huerjano (orphan) are also used for circum- 
scribed eminences. The latter is applied especially to solitary eminences 
standing far away from kindred masses. 

Tinaja . — A solitary, hemispherical mountain, shaped somewhat like 
the inverted bottom of a Mexican olla. The term is more generally u.sed, 
however, for water holes or natural bowls. 

SorifUa (watermelon). — An oblong, oval, or rounded eminence. Exam- 
ple, the Sandia range of New Mexico. 

Pelado . — A barren, treele.ss mountain. 

Other appropriate words describe the relative parts of a moun- 
tain or mountains : 

Cnmhre . — The highest elevation or highest peak of a sierra or cordillera. 

Pico . — A summit point. 

CuchiUa (knife). — u-seful term for the salients or comb-like, secondary 
crests which project at right angles between the lateral drainage originat- 
ing on the sides of a sierra. Example, the Cuchilla de Baracoa of Cuba. 
It is equivalent to the French arete. 

The adjective chiquito, meaning little, is applied to minor secondary 
fringing elevations accompanying ihe base of a sierra or cordillera, such 
as “ hogbacks.” 


NAMES APPLIED TO PLAINS 

The arid region of North America is about equally divided 
into mountains and plains. The plains belong to four great 
topographic categories, which in the rich Spanish nomenclature 
of the region maj' be termed mesas, bolsons, plazas, and cuestas (in- 
cluding hajadas). Mesas are summit plains ; cuestas and bajadas 
are inclined plains, which can also be classed as declivities; 
plazas and bolsons are valley plains or flat-bottomed valleys. 

The term mesa means, literally, a table. It is a flat surface on 
the top of hills or mountains. In New Mexico it is applied not 
only to the table-lands of a circumscribed summit, but to ex- 
tensive level benches abutting against higher eminences and 
bounded partially by escarpments called cejas. Extensive mesa 
regions are usually called by Americans jilateaux. 

Mesas of New Mexico and of the Trans-Pecos region of Texas 
are of three general t 3 'pes : plateau mesas, bench mesas, and 
cuesta mesas. The plateau mesa is a circumscribed summit 
whose continuity with other areas has been destroyed by erosion. 
The bench mesa is a bench or shoulder projecting against a region 
forming a higher background. Bench mesas may be classified 
by structure into bolson mesas, stream-terrace mesas, talus-fan 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


295 


mesas, and malpais mesas. A bolson mesa is a bench mesa form- 
ing the outer escarpment of a drainage valley v’hicb has l>een 
cut through a bolson. Example, the El Paso mesa. Stream- 
terrace, talus-fan, and malpais mesas are self-explanator}^ terms. 

A cuesta is a structural plain, so tilted that it has a perceptibly 
sloping surface. The cuesta is, in a manner, a transitional fea- 
ture between mesa and mountain. The Cuesta del Burro of tlie 
Marfa, Texas, sheet of the United States Geological Survey is an 
example. 

Bolson .* — The third type of plain is the bolson. Bolsons are 
basin valleys which have not, or originally had not, an}^ out- 
flowing drainage, and are lined with sedimentary debris derived 
from the surrounding countiy. 

A 'plaza t may be defined as the sublevel floor of an extensive, 
wide, flat valley lying between the cejas of mesas. In conception 
it resembles a canon in being limited by cliffs, but differs from 
a canon in the element of narrowness, the floor of a plaza being 
an exceptionally wide valley plain. Examide, Plaza Larga, the 
flat valley of a southern tributar}’- of the Canadian, in New 
Mexico, near the Texas line. The valleys of the Pecos and 
Canadian rivers in eastern New Mexico are plazas of great mag- 
nitude. 

^lesas and cuestas are structural plains, representing surfaces 
resulting from the survival of hard layers of rock. 

The plaza is a degradational plain, lying between steep escarp- 
ments, and formed by the cutting away of the hard, rock floor 
of the mesas through the underlying unconsolidated beds, to still 
lower strata of harder rock beneath it. 

The bolson is an aggradational plain, formed by the filling 
up of ancient structural and erosion valleys by the debris of tbe 
marginal country. 

The edges of the rock-sheets composing mesas in some in- 
stances upturn into mountain structure. The mountain struc- 
ture sometimes flattens out into mesa structure. 

The cuesta is a transitional feature, and connecting step be- 
tween the mountain, mesa, and bolson. When a cuesta slopes 
toward a mountain and has its ceja or escarpment on tlie side 
farthest from and subparallel to tbe mountain range, tbe valley 

•Literally a large purse. Example, Holson ile Mapimi. Lake Honnevillo is a 
liolson. 

+ Literally an open, level area, sueh as a public square, a market place, or a drill 
ground. Applied in topography to local stretches of level, soarp-hordoreil valh-ys. in 
a generally hilly region. 


296 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


lying between this and the mountain may become a bolson, and 
the highest crest of the escarpment of the cuesta may represent 
a sim})le monoclinal summit of the type defined by Russell and 
Gilbert as “ basin ranges.” The escarpment of a cuesta is often 
produced by a fault running parallel with it, and still another 
bolson may be developed in the trough thus formed at its foot. 
This process, many times rej)eated, produces alternations of 
bolson plains and of basin ranges of the cuesta type. 

Rolsons alwa}'-s lie in valleys between the mountains, mesas, 
or cuestas, and are of subsequent origin. 

.Mesas are remnants of ])lains, once more extensive, but now 
constantly diminishing in area by degradation. Plazas are plains 
cut out of mesas, representing areas from which the mesas have 
been removed, and, conversely to the mesa, are increasing in 
area. Bolsons are ancient valleys which have been and usually 
are still being filled up by degradation of the surrounding moun- 
tains, mesas, and cuestas. The mesa plains in general constitute 
the plateau regions bordering the lateral and terminal portions 
of cordilleras, and occur chiefly as the platform surrounding the 
eastern line of the Rocky mountain cordilleras. 

The j)lazas lie mostly east of the true mountains, principally 
along the Pecos and Canadian valleys of New Mexico, but are 
es{)ccially develoj)ed in the plateau countries wherever the forma- 
tion known as the Red Beds enters into the substructure. 

The bolsons generally lie interiorward of the plateau (mesa) 
regions bordering the interior side of the easternmost ranges of 
the cordilleran front and usually increase in area westward. 

The chief plaza countries of the Southwest are from 2,000 to 
4,000 feet in altitude. The altitude of the mesa country varies 
with the continental slope, but around the Rocky mountain re- 
gion has an average of more than 5,000 feet. The bojsons usually 
lie l)etween 4,000 and 5,000 feet, although some of them are below 
sea level. 

NAMES APPLIED TO DECLIVITIES 

The terms applied to declivities are : 

Ceja, Puerto, Escabrodura, 

Cejita, Bajada, Balcones. 

Ceja . — The late General Albert Pike wrote the first descrij^tion of which 
I find mention of the great escarpment constituting the eastern breaks of 
that })ortion of the mesa (plateau) of the plains known as the Llano 
Estacado. I have been unable to find his book, but George Wilkins 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


297 


Kendall, who wrote the “ Narrative of the Texan Santa Fe Expedition,” * 
refers to it in describing the breaks or escarpment near Red river as fol- 
lows : “ The ^Mexicans who started with Albert Pike in his journey across 
the prairie spoke of this steppe and gave the name of Las Cejas, or the 
Eyebrows, to the singular range, [t] INIr P. appears to have passed to 
the south of the steppe.” 

The word ceja literally means a fringe, selvage, or border, and in to- 
])ography is used for the escarpment cliff of a mesa. I was agreeably 
surprised to find this word used in its literal sense as the escarpment or 
mesa in three widely separated localities on the United States Land Office 
maps of New Mexico — the Ceja de los Comancheros, the Cejas de Galisteo, 
the Cejitas Blanca. If there is any feature more conspicuous than others 
in the arid region of New Mexico it is these cejas, extending for miles and 
miles across the country as far as the eye can see. 

Cejita is the diminutive of ceja and is a very appropriate word for lines 
of low escarpments which are frequently met with. These are usually 
a secondaiy accompaniment of the larger cejas. For instance, where a 
mesa has a compound escarpment the uppermost cliff constitutes the pre- 
dominating ceja, wliile its lower slopes reveal smaller benches in terrace- 
like arrangement, the faces of which may appropriately be called cejitas. 

Puerto . — In the account of the Texan Santa Fe expedition is found a 
description of how the party wandered for miles along the mesa edges 
trying to find a place where they could descend the cejas of the northern 
edge of the Llano Estacado. Such a place, made by the flattening of the 
gradient of the caletas forming the headwater drainage, was called a 
puerto, which may be defined as a drainage notch through a ceja or sierra. 

Bajada . — The term bajada literally means a gradual descent. I find it 
used upon the maps of New Mexico and applied to a gradually descend- 
ing slope as distinguished from a more vertical escarpment. Example, 
the Bajada de los Comancheros. I take the liberty of proposing to limit 
the use of this term to extensive slopes of degradational and aggradational 
origin. J: Bajadas of the latter kind are composed of talus and often con- 
stitute extensive features, such as that shown west of the Rio Grande 
on the Santa Clara, New Mexico, sheet of the United States Geological 
Survey. This definition is made in order to distinguish between a bajada 
and a cuesta, the latter being a tilted structural plain. 

Eitmbrodura . — Literally the place where a chicken has scratched. In 
Featherstone’s account of the Santa F6 Expedition ^ he describes how the 
party became lost and entangled in the escabroduras lying eastward of 
the ceja of the Llano Estacado. These were nothing more than the in- 
deeply erode<l regions we know as Bad Lands. The ba.ses of nearly all 
the cejas grade into extensive regions of e.scabroduras. 

Jinlconen (balcony). — This name has lx;en specifically applied and is 

* Narrative of the Texiiri Santa F6 Expedition, Ijy George Wilkina Kendall. Vol. i, 
page 2.V>. London, ISI l. 

t It will be well to remember ttiat in all the old exploration.a tlie groat eecarpmentH of 
tlio meHaa are called mountains or ranges. 

t There siiotild be a term for eaeli of these kinds of slope. 

§ Journal of the Kuyal Geographical Society, I8 t.'l. 


298 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


still used for the line of hills forming the scarp of the plateau region of 
Texas, between Austin and the Rio Grande. 

NAMES APPLIED TO STREAMS AND STREAM VALLEYS 

The Spanish language, judging from the application of the 
terms, is exceedingly rich in appropriate names for both stream 
courses and the forms of the stream basins. The following are 
a few of the words ajiplied to the streams proper : 

Rio. — flowing river; the arterial trunk of a drainage system. 

Cala. — A creek, corresponding to the laterals of the main drainage. 

Calela (leading into). — This is a useful word for the ultimate and small- 
est headwater ramification of a cala or lateral. It is synonymous with the 
term “ draw,” used in the middle Plains region of the United States, the 
“ coulee” of Montana, and “ drain” as used in Colorado. 

An-oijo. — A streamway, ordinarily dry, in which water occurs only im- 
mediately after a torrential rainfall. 

Tliere are also many terms describing certain characteristic 
acpteous conditions I’requently met wuth in our arid region, such 
as ojo, agua, tinaja, cieuega, ensenada, laguna, etc. 

The Spanish language likewise presents a rich assortment of 
appropriate terms descriptive of the form of the stream valley or 
drainage basin. 

Barmncn. — .V gorge of the first magnitude in a mountain region. The 
valley of the Arkansas through the Rockies is a barranca ; the Royal gorge 
is a canon in the lower portion of the barranca. 

Cation. — A generic term for a streamway having very steep walls and 
a narrow gorge. Its use conveys two ideas, verticality of wall and nar- 
rowness of the valley. 

Cajon. — A canon having vertical walls like the sides of a box. 

Tijera. — A cafion with angular walls having the profile of a letter V. 

CanoncUa. — A small canon. 

Canada . — The smallest cafion. 

Plaza. — The plaza described under the general head of plains belongs 
also under the head of drainage valleys. It resembles the cafion in that 
it is bordered by subvertical walls, but diflers in that its bottom instead 
of being narrow is of great breadth. 

Rincon. — Literally a corner ; a short, wide arm of a plaza indenting a 
mesa, receiving drainage at its inner end, and opening into a plaza. 

(^aebrada. — This word literally means a ravine, and is extensively used 
in Guatemala and other Central American states. 

Boca (mouth). — Where a stream way suddenly leaves a barranca, tijera, 
canon, or other precipitous gorge, and debouches on a plain, the point is 
called a boca. The bocas of Spanish America are conspicuous and inter- 
esting features. 

Foao (a ditch). — A streamway without conspicuous banks or bluffs. 

Calltjon . — A deep and narrow pass through a sierra. 

Angostura. — A nari’ow pass through a ceja. 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


299 


The foregoing words cover nearly all the characteristic topo- 
gra[)hic forms of the arid region of Spanish America for which 
Ave have no good English equivalents. There remain, however, 
two interesting unnamed forms of valleys in the arid region for 
which I have as yet found no appropriate Spanish Avords. One 
of these is the elongated headwater indentation of a streaniAA'ay 
into a mesa, haAung canon Avails and a notable area of flat, Avide 
bottom. This type of canoned streamAvay is especially devel- 
oped along the coastAvard side of the Great Plains south of the 
Arkansas, and particularh^ along the Llano Estacado and Ed- 
wards plateau, Avhere the heads of all the principal drainage 
incise the plains in this manner. The wide, flat bottoms of the 
streaiUAvay have often been partially refilled by later aggrada- 
tional material. This form of valley is to a certain extent an 
elongated rincon. It ma_y also be conceived as a narroAv plaza. 
The home of the Quohado * band of Comanche Indians Avas in a 
canon of this character where the Red river indents the Llano 
Estacado. For the Avant of a better name, the term quohado 
could be provisional!}'’ used for this type of valley. 

Xearl}^ all the stream A^alleys described above are the result 
of normal drainage following the inclination of a sloping plain 
or mountain side. Occasionally, hoAveA'er, the seaward progress 
of a stream is opposed by an interior-facing escarpment Avhich 
must he crossed. Without here stopping to describe the method 
by Avhich this has been accom])lished, it may l^e stated that there 
are usually great V-shai)e valleys indenting the escarpment at 
such places, constituting a feature resembling a rincon, hut dif- 
fering from it in that the apex of the V points doAvn stream 
instead of toAvard the lieadAvaters, and in that it receives the 
drainage at its Avider end instead of discharging it therefrom. 
Although the Spanish language has fiiled to name this feature, 
the coAvboys have called it the “ Fry-pan valley.” This form of 
topography is a conspicuous feature of the Texas region. 

In conclusion, let us illustrate the a])pro])riateness of some of 
these terms by direct application to tlie Rocky mountain and 
Great Plains region. This, as a Avhole, is com])osed of great 
masses of mountains, cordilleras, and single ranges called sierras. 
Resides these, there are many more or less small, isolated j)eaks — 
tetas, mamelons, sandias, cernjs, etc. The ]trinci]>al cordilleras 

• It WRS ut one time siiKKCHted thiit the word Quoliiido wiie a oormptioii of Quebnidn, 
but Mr Jamea Mooney informs me that such is not the caae, Quohado beinx a Cotuaiitdie 
Word signifying outside 


300 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


are as follows, beginning at the north and east: The Montana 
cordillera, the Colorado cordillera, the Guadalupe cordillera, 
and the cordillera of the eastern Sierra Madre. Each of these 
grades westw’ard into a great mesa or plateau region. The Co- 
lumbia plateau borders the Montana cordillera. The Colorado 
plateau lies w'est, southw’est, and southea.st of the Colorado cor- 
dillera. The Guadalupe cordillera is bordered on the west by a 
relatively smaller, but nevertheless extensive, plateau, known as 
the Sierra Diablo, which appears as a diminutive feature on the 
map. The eastern Sierra Madre of Mexico likewise flattens out 
westward into an extensive plateau region, which, for the want 
of a better name, I call the Parras plateau. The plateaus become 
tilted in places into cuestas, and, by faulting, the latter grade into 
sierras of the basin-range type, separated by bolsons. Each of 
the plateau regions is thus bordered on the west and south by 
great regions of bolsons and basin ranges. The Colorado plateau 
is h»ordered on the w'est and southwest by the Great Basin region 
of Powell and Gilbert, and on the southeast by the Coahuilan 
bolson region. 

There are also internodal areas of mesa-like topography be- 
tween the ends of the cordillera masses of the Rocky mountain 
systems, such as that lying between the southern end of the 
Colorado cordillera and the northern end of the Guadalupe 
cordillera. The great cordillera in Ave.stern Mexico known as 
the Sierra Madre passes at its northern end into the Colorado 
plateau (not into the California sierras, as often supposed), and 
constitutes a partial barrier between the Coahuilan bolson region 
of Mexico, Trans-Pecos Texas, and New Mexico, and the great 
bolson (basin) region of Utah and Nevada. 

The plateaus of the plains lying east of the Rocky mountain 
region south of Arkansas river are collectively a series of mesas 
overlooking broad plazas and separated from them by escarp- 
ments. The conspicuous plaza regions are the Canadian and 
Pecos valleys of New Mexico. The great Central Denuded region 
of Texas, Oklahoma, and southern Kansas is also mostly a plaza 
region. On the east are Cretaceous prairies of Texas, which w’e 
have described as dip plains; these are incipient cuestas. The 
Central Denuded region lying between tbe westward-facing 
scarps of these prairies* on the east and the eastward-looking 
scar})s of the plains on the w'est is collectively a great plaza 
country. 

•The old border of Appalachia forms the eastern boundary of this region, north of 
the Ouachita mountain system of Indian Territory. 


TOPOGRAPHIC TERMS OF SPANISH AMERICA 


301 


The escarpments bordering the mesas and surrounding the 
plaza countries can also be readily described in this nomencla- 
ture. Theoretically, the simplest scarp form may be merely a 
ceja or cliff, but in this region, where hard and soft layers alter- 
nate, the escarpments are nearly ever}^where compound, con- 
sisting of a surmounting ceja cornice, leading down by slopes 
(bajadas) and cejitas to a lower pediment, usually made of 
escabroduras (bad lands). 

Let us also see how these terms Avill apply to the description 
of what we commonly know as drainage basins. 

East of the mountains the two through-flowing streams of 
major magnitude, the Pecos and Canadian, pass from mountains 
into mesa regions and thence to plazas. The streams of second 
magnitude, such as the Red, Brazos, and Colorado, originate on 
mesas and pass through rincons or quohados into plazas. The 
streams of both these classes leave the plaza countries through 
fry-pans. The fry -pan of the Pecos is the southern end of the 
Pecos plaza where this stream, near the thirty-first meridian, 
enters a canon made by the gathering walls of the Stockton and 
Edwards plateau. The Colorado, west of Austin, finds its way 
across the western escarpment of the Grand Prairie by means of 
a similar fry-])an yalle 3 ^ The Brazos, Colorado, Trinity, and 
Red river all make similar fry-pan indentations into the west- 
ern edge of the Grand Prairie escarpment. 

The Canadian mav be thus described : . The caletas leading 
down from the cuchillas of the Snowy range in the mountain- 
ous })ortion of the stream cpiickly gather into tijeras. Reaching 
the Ocate and Las Vegas mesas, the streamway through them 
is a canon. The boca of this canon is where the stream enters 
the plaza region, between tlie thirty-fifth and thirt^'-sixth paral- 
lels. From tlie Ijoca to the 102d meridian the streamway 
threads the plaza country of the Canadian, oidy limited on 
either side hv' the great cejasof the Llano Estacado on the south 
and of the Las Vegas mesa on the north. The ])laza of the 
Canadian as a whole is subdivided cejitas into numerous 
succe.ssive plazas. The stream leaves the ])laza country through 
a frv-pan and traverses the eastern ])ortion of the plateau of the 
Plains through a canoncita. 'I’his canoncita also has a l)oca 
near tlie KJOth meridian, marking the entrance of the river into 
the still greater plaza of the Central Denuded region. Here the 
topograph}' again changes, the center (jf the streamway becomes 

■JO 


302 


WEATHER BUREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 


a sand plain, while its margins are denuded divides of the type 
called escabroduras or bad lands. 

The Rio Grande, like the Canadian, has its caletas in the Rocky 
mountains, gathering into tijeras, but the remainder of its course 
is quite different. It soon enters the great bolson of San Luis 
valley and continues in a longitudinal direction through a chain 
of bolsons the entire distance across New Mexico and into Texas 
as far as Quitman mountains. Thence, until the Cordilleras are 
crossed, it flows through great barrancas. Leaving the moun- 
tains, its course through the Stockton i)lateau is a typical canon, 
finally merging into the low country of the Rio Grande embay- 
ment. 


THE WEATHER BUREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 

By Professor MTllis L. IMoore, 

Chief of the Weather Bureau 

The special work of the \Veather Bureau in connection with 
the rivers of the country is to facilitate commerce on navigable 
streams l)y the dail}’ pul)lication of information as to water stages 
along the course of each river, and to issue timel}" warnings of 
floods, with a view to the saving of life and property. 

On January 1, 181)6, theAVeather Bureau river and flood system 
consisted of 145 sj^ecial river stations, equipped with standard 
river-gauges for measuring the vertical rise of the surface of the 
Avater, and in man}' cases with standard thermometers for meas- 
uring air temperature. Tliese stations were manned by local 
observers, receiving from the Weather Bureau pay commensurate 
with tlieir services. There were 42 rainfall stations, equipped 
Avith rain-gauges and manned by local-paid observers, and so 
distributed in the various catchment basins of the tributaries to 
important rivers as to give, in connection Avith the regular me- 
teorological Weather Bureau stations, a fair ap])roximation to 
the average rainhill throughout each Avatershed. There Avere 
38 completely equipped meteorological stations of the Weather 
Bureau Avhere riA'er measurements Avere made, and 16 Weather 
Bureau stations Avhich Avere centers from Avhich flood Avarnings 
and forecasts of ex{)ected changes in river level Avere issued. 

As yet the rules of flood forecasting are largely empirical. The 
official in charge of a river center is familiar Avith the main river 


WEATHER BUREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 303 


and its tributaries, the area and topography of the catchment 
basin, the freqnenc 3 ^ and. especially the intensity, of the rainfall, 
the average time occupied in the passage of flood-crests from one 
station to anotlier, and the history of past rises. The knowl- 
edge of low-water conditions, especially where bars and shoals 
exist, is perha{)s of as great importance as the knowledge of high 
water. In fact, many statements are received at the central 
office in Washington from steamboat and navigation companies 
to the effect that low-water conditions continue longer and affect 
navigation more than those of high water. The people living in 
regions contiguous to navigable streams are materiall}^ affected 
in their industries by the conditions of navigation, but the de- 
struction of life and property, as effected by the rivers, depends 
entire!}’' upon flood conditions. The official in charge of a river 
center is expected, with the data at his command, to give in- 
formation to those interested in navigation, even during low or 
medium stages of water, that is of great pecuniary value; but 
his chief and foremost duty is the dissemination of warnings 
when floods threaten. 

Many data in regard to river stages have been published by 
the Weather Bureau, the Mississippi River commission, and the 
U. S. Signal Service. From the data thus collected and now 
covering many years at some stations and shorter periods at 
others, the following general relations have been deduced : The 
time it takes high water to pass from Pittsburg to Wheeling is 
one day; from Pittsburg to Parkersburg, two days; from Park- 
ensburg to Cincinnati, three days; from Cincinnati to Cairo, six 
days ; from Cairo to Vicksburg, seven days, and from Vicksburg 
to New Orleans, four days. From Pittsburg, therefore, to the 
Gulf requires 22 days. Similar general relations concerning the 
movements of other rivers have been determined. Since the 
time of travel is so great, it naturally follows that many inter- 
fering conditions arise tending to accelerate or retard the crest 
of the flood-wave. No simple time rules are therefore possible. 
The volume of water passing a station in a given time is known 
ftw only a few places, and varies, of course, with high and low 
water; nor can sini])l(.‘ rules be based upon the rainfall, as the 
absorptive condition of the soil is not constant and the distribu- 
tion of precipitation over the drainage area is not always deter- 
minable. 

'I'be principal rivers concerned in the W'eather Bureau sys- 
tem are the Alleghany, Monongabela, Ohio, Kanawha, W’abasb, 


304 


^y FATHER BUREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 


Illinois, Tennessee, Cumberland, Mississippi, Missouri, Arkansas, 
and Red rivers of the central valleys ; the Columbia, Sacra- 
mento, and San Joaquin of the Pacific coasts and the Hudson, 
Susquehanna, Potomac, Savannah, Chattahoochee, and Alabama 
of the Atlantic and east Gulf coast. Gauging stations are most 
numerous on the rivers of the central valleys, and rainfall sta- 
tions are more numerous throughout the catchment liasins of 
these rivers than they are on the combined rivers of the Atlantic 
and Pacific coasts. 

The river-flood service of the Bureau was reorganized on July 
3, 1893, and the duty of warning communities resident along 
the great rivers i>laced in the hands of local forecast officials at 
the {irincipal river centers. Each forecaster in charge of a river 
center has a definite section of the river system of his district to 
watch and forecast for. He receives the necessary telegraphic 
reports of rainfall tliat has occurred over the tributaries in his 
river district, the daily telegraphic data as to gauge readings 
nearer the source of the main river than his own station, and 
also gauge readings on many of the tributary streams. Each 
forecaster is familiar with the area of the catchment basin from 
which his rainfall reports are received, the contour and configu- 
ration of the surface, and the jiermealhlity of the soil. A slowly 
falling rain of considerable volume on a nearly level and perme- 
able soil may cause little rise, while a ra})idly falling rain of the 
same amount on an impermeable and greatly inclined surface 
will gather quickly in the channels of tributaries and soon be- 
come a rushing torrent in the main stream. Local forecasters 
are furnished with all the data available relative to the histoiy 
of previous floods, and are consequently equi[)ped as completely 
as possible for the work before them. In view of this fact and 
of the ability and experience of the men employed on this im- 
]>ortanty duty, it is believed that no disastrous rise can occur in 
the future without adequate warning of the same having been 
given to all concerned. 

The territory assigned to each forecast district is as follows : 
New Orleans : Mississiiqh river from Vicksburg to its mouth 
and the Red and Ouachita rivers; Vicksburg: the river from 
Memphis to Vicksburg ; Cairo: that section of the Ohio from 
Evansville to Cairo and of the Mississii)pi from St. Louis to 
INIemphis; St. Louis: the Mississip|)i from Davenport to St. 
Louis and the Missouri east of Kansas City; Omaha: the INIis- 
souri from Kansas City northward ; Cincinnati : the Ohio and 


]VEATHER BEREA U RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 305 


its tributaries from Evansville to Marietta ; Nashville : the Cum- 
berland, Chattanooga, and Tennessee rivers; Montgomeiy : the 
rivers in Alabama; Little Rock: the Arkansas; St. Paul: the 
INIississippi above Davenport; Harrisburg: the Susquehanna; 
Augusta : the Savannah ; Portland, Oregon : the Snake and Co- 
lumbia; San Francisco: the Sacramento and San Joaquin. 

A river bulletin-board has been placed on some of the prin- 
cipal steamboats leaving Cairo, so arranged that the river stages 
can lie read by people on shore and on passing steamers. Thus 
pilots ascending or descending the river get the latest informa- 
tion as to the height of the water at the places to which they are 
bound. 

The river-gauge is a graduated scale on which the height of 
the river is measured. The zero of the gauge is usually at or 
somewhere near the level of the lowest water known. A gauge 
is generall}' vertical, is usually fastened to a bridge, pier, or piling, 
and is of sufficient length to cover the greatest height of water 
likely to occur. ’When a river-gauge cannot be set vertically, it 
is laid on the bank according to the slope of the ground. The 
foot-marks on a gauge of this kind must be accurately located 
by means of a spirit-level, so as to agree with those on a vertical 
gauge. When a stage of water below the zero occurs, it is read 
as a minus stage. It is not desirable to change the zero point 
after readings made from that basis have continued for any 
length of time. 

It may be of interest to know that on account of the narrow- 
ne.ss of the valley and the precipitous shore line of the Ohio the 
water in this river must show a rise varying from 30 to 50 feet 
before the danger line is reached. At Cincinnati the danger line 
is 45 feet above the zero of the scale, and a height of 7 1 feet above 
zero lias been recorded. On the upper Mississi])pi the danger 
line averages about 15 feet above zero, but from St. Louis south- 
ward to Vicksburg it averages about 35 feet, while at New Orleans, 
with its great system of levees, the danger limit is but 13 feet 
above zero. 

In the early history of the river s\\stem the data received from 
the various river stations, tbougb meager, were sufficient to i>er- 
mit useful warning of marked changes in the river levels. In 
the spring of 1874 this branch of the Hureau bad its first expe- 
rience with destructive floods. In that year floods devastated 
the valleys of the lower Mississip])i, the Arkansas, White, Peil, 
and other rivers, causing crevasses in the levees and inundating 


306 


WEATHER BEREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 


large areas of bottom lands in the ^Mississippi delta. The value 
of the special reports wliich were telegraj^hed at that time b_y the 
Weather Bureau (or Signal Service Office, as it then was) could 
scarce! 3 ' he determined. The\" were the onl\" reports sent directly 
to the i>eople of the flooded districts, and showed daily the com- 
ing rise or fall of the water. A study of these floods showed the 
necessitv of establishing for each of the rivers a certain depth of 
water above which the stages were dangerous to river interests. 
These points were designated as “ danger levels ” and “ danger 
lines,” and were established for the ^Mississippi, Missouri, and 
Ohio rivers during that year. In prosecuting this work, data 
from the l>est available authorities were collected and comjhled 
for the construction of a chart of the basins and watersheds of 
the principal rivers. A river slate was designed, on which were 
outlined the average grades of the beds of the various rivers at 
different jiarts of tlieir courses. The object in preparing this 
chart was to facilitate the tracing of flood-waves and their move- 
ment from one place to another. When an unusualU' heavy 
rain was noted in any watershed, it was known into what rivers 
it must flow and ap|)roximately the rise that would result. A 
knowledge of the rapidiU' with which the flood would travel and 
of the rivers it would pass made it possible not only to follow its 
course, but also to give timely warning of its approach. 

Some idea of the vast destruction of properW bv floods may 
be gathered from the statement that the floods of the spring of 
1881 and of 1882 caused a loss of not less than 615,000,000 to the 
properU’ interests of the Ohio and Mi.ssissipi)i valleys. It may 
also be noted that the flood of the spring of 1882 caused a lo.ss 
of 138 lives in the region from Cairo southward to New Orleans. 

In forecasting stages of water during such flood j)eriods as the 
two mentioned, it must be borne in mind that precipitation may 
be onU' an inconsiderable factor. In those cases vast quantities 
of snow, which had accumulated during the winter, overlay the 
northern states, and with the early rains of spring came abnor- 
mal heat, causing a ver}’ rapid melting of the snow lying over 
manv of the watersheds. In these floods it is ])robable that the 
sudden coming of abnormally high temjieratures was a more 
2 )otent influence than the immediate precipitation. 

The floods of 1884 began in the Ohio valley in Fehruaiy, 
when the river reached the highest stage on record. The Missis- 
sippi river from Cairo to the Gulf also reached a very high stage. 
Am 2 >le and timely warnings were telegraphed to all available 


WEATHER BUREAU RIVER AND FLOOD SYSTEM 307 


points throughout the Ohio valley, and the resources of the 
Bureau were taxed to the utmost in the interests of the flooded 
districts. The dainage caused in the Ohio valley this flood 
could hardly be calculated. In the region about Cincinnati 
alone the loss of property was variously estimated at from 
810,000,000 to 825,000,000. 

From June, 1889, to July, 1893, the care and supervision of 
the flood service of the Bureau were entrusted to a single indi- 
vidual, and a considerable extension of the system was made in 
the way of establishing rainfall stations near the headwaters of 
the more important tributaries of the great rivers. In the early 
part of June, 1889, forecasts Avere made twelve to tAvent}^-four 
hours in advance of the flood Avhich reached the city of Wash- 
ington, and the value of property saved in this city alone Avas 
many times greater than the annual appropriation for the entire 
flood service of the country. In the spring of 1890 the loAver 
Mississippi valley Avas flooded for a distance of forty miles back 
from the river in the states of Missouri, Arkansas, Mississippi, 
and Louisiana. Special flood warnings, w-hich Avere amply con- 
firmed by the subsequent stages of water, Avere issued from 
Washington in advance of the flood, and in several instances 
far in advance of the flood-crest. Numerous illustrations might 
be adduced to shoAV the vast utility, from a commercial stand- 
point, of a thoroughly equipped Government flood-Avarning sys- 
tem, notAvithstanding the fact that the forecasts are based upon 
empirical reasoning, and are, therefore, subject to more or less 
error. The allotment from the annual appropriation for the 
support of the river and flood system of the Weather Bureau is 
not greater than the A’alue of property that may be saA'ed in the 
cellar of an ordinary commercial house. 

In considering the relation of the Weather Bureau to the 
liydrography of tlie country it sliould not be forgotten that there 
are noAV about 2,000 standard rain-gauges uniformly distributed 
throughout the region east of the Rocky mountains from Avlncli 
daily measurements of precipitation are received at the central 
oflice. In tlie Rocky mountain region there are about 1,000 
gauges, but, on account of the paucity of poj)ulation, tliere are 
many imj)ortant regions from Avhich pro])cr data are not being re- 
ceived. Measurements of snoAvfall on the higli mountain ranges 
Avould be of great value in connection Avith irrigation, but the 
))resent (listril)Ution of observation stations is inadetpiate to the 
proper uiulertaking of this imj)ortant work. 


CHARLES FRANCIS HALL AND JONES SOUND 


The accom})an\nng letter — one of the last written by Hall, the 
distinguished Arctic ex})lorer — is of marked interest, botli per- 
sonal and historic, and its publication, in view of the continued 
efforts of Mr Robert Stein to stimulate Arctic exploration from 
a safe base station on the shores of Jones sound, is peculiarly 
timely. The letter, addressed to Mr Henry Gannett, then of 
Harvard College observatoiy, was in connection with the position 
of astronomer to Hall’s expedition, which Mr Gannett declined. 
It will be recalled that Hall’s instructions of June 10. 1871, left 
his route open to his own choice. Admiral Davis, in his official 
narrative of the expedition, says that Hall wrote Brevoort and 
Grinnell, in January, 1870, that his route would be via Jones 
sound, but adds: “He found occasion to change this opinion 
before leaving the United States.” As no ])Ossil)le information 
as to either route could have reached Hall, Davis’ narrative has 
been held to indicate indecision on the part of Hall. 

This letter, dated just one month before he left Washington, 
shows Hall setting forth in detail his plans for exploration via 
Jones sound, and confirms the belief, held by most Arctic men 
in this country, that his success via Smith sound was due to his 
good judgment in taking advantage of the ice conditions, which 
were found to he especiall}’’ favorable toward Smith sound on his 
passing cape York. 

It may be added that the discoveries inade on the west coast 
of Grinnell Land by Nares’ expedition in 1876 and Greely’s in 
1882-’83 prove that no success that Hall could possibly have 
attained via Jones sound would have equaled that resulting from 
his excellent judgment in availing himself of the open sea toward 
Smith sound, instead of attempting the distant and unknown ice 
of the route he originally proposed to take. A. W. G. 

WAsiirNGTON, D. C., May 10, 1871. 

The scientific corps will be small -to consist of onl_v two or three. Dr 
Emil Bessels, who has lately arrived from Heidelburg, Germany, is with 
me. He is engaged as naturalist and photographer, and will most likely 
he the surgeon. He comes strongly endorsed by Dr Peterman, of Gotha, 
Germany, the most distinguished geographer of the world. 

The great object of the expedition now fitting ont here at the navy yard 
is to make geographical discoveries from about latitude 80° north up to the 

308 


CHARLES FRANCIS HALL AND JONES SOUND 


309 


North Pole. In doing this I feel [wish ?] to contribute all I can in ad- 
vancing the cause of science, especially of that branch relating to astron- 
omy. For near four months now the vessel designed for the North Polar 
E.vpedition has been in hand at the Washington navj" yard. She has been 
almost entireh^ built anew, and is now the best strengthened vessel for 
Arctic service that any country ever fitted out. The vessel is to be in 
waiting about the 1st of June, at which time I hope to take departure. 
Capt. S. V. Budington, of Groton, Conn., is the sailing master and ice- 
pilot ; Hubbel C. Chester, of Noank, Conn., is the first mate. The former 
has been 30 years at sea and 20 years navigating, more or less, in Davis 
strait; the latter has been for 12 years in tbe Arctic sea. The second 
mate is William Morton, who was on the first Grinnell expedition, 1850-’!, 
and with Dr Kane on his remarkable expedition of 1853-’4 and ’5. This 
rviorton is the adventurer who, with the Esquimaux Hans, made the 
sledge journey northward from Kane’s winter quarters, latitude 78° 37^ 
north, up to cape Constitution, where he discovered the renowned “ Open 
Polar sea.” 

The Esquimaux family, Joe, Hannah, and their little daughter Punny, 
will accompan}’’ me back to the north. This family I brought to the 
States in the fall of 1869, when I returned from my five-year vo5’age and 
travels in the Arctic regions. The whole ship's company from the States 
will consist of about 27 souls. The vessel is about 400 tons — a top-sail 
schooner with auxiliary ijropeller. I think Government will send one 
of her vessels as a transport to one of the higher settlements of Green- 
land. By having this transport to convey provisions and stores, a great 
confidence can be reposed in the resources of the expedition. IMyproposed 
route is up along the west coast of Greenland to the latitude of 76° north ; 
then I turn to the westward, striking into Jones sound. After a penetra- 
tion of this water for about 150 miles discovery begins, when the prow of 
J'olaris (the name of the vessel) will, if land and water will permit, he 
>irged on to the north as far as practicable. It is quite probable that the 
ves.sel cannot safely be advanced farther than latitude 80°, which will 
leave a distance, of course, of 600 geographic miles to the Pole. The time 
of arriving at latitude 80° will be about September 1 ; then a winter har- 
bor will be sought for and vessel i)laced in it. The following sju-ing (of 
1872) sledge j)arties will be organized and led on poleward. By sledging 
and by boating— just as nature’s highway shall be found to be — tlie north 
e.xtremity of the earth’s axis must be finally reached by the undersigned 
and his party ; then my mi.ssion will have been i)erformed, and not till 
then. I e.xpect to suc(!eed in accomplishing the ])urposes of this II. S. 
North Polar Expedition within two and one-half years, yet it may take 
live years. Every man that goes on this expedition innst understand 
that if lu! goes it is with this full understanding that he will be faithful 
and true to the expedition and to all that pertains to it to the (mkI if it 
takes from two and a half to five years. I am confident, however, that 
the purpo.se of the ex|)cdition will he acc<nnplished hy the end of two 
and a lialf years from the 1st of .Inne ne.\t. 

Yon are nixlonhtedly acquainted with the work that Sontag, theastron- 
ijiner of Dr Kane’s expedition, |i(!rfornn‘<l. . . . Owing to the fact 


310 


SEALING SCHOONERS IN TUSCARORA DEEP 


tliat Congress did not appropriate but half the money sum I desired for 
tlie expedition, the salaries of all are far less than they should he; but it 
is certain tliat if the objects of this expedition should he fully accom- 
))lished every soul of it that shall have been energetic, faithful, and true 
will on the return of the expedition he abundantly rewarded by our lib- 
eral country through her noble-minded, appreciative U. S. Senatoi's and 
Representatives. I have been thus assured by many of these Senators and 
Representatives. 

Yours, C. F. Hai.t., 

Commanding U. S. North Polar Expedition. ■ 


MINERAL PRODUCTION IN THE UNITED STATES 

The United State.s Geological Survey has issued, under date of 
August 1, a statement of the mineral production of the United 
States in 1895 differing materially as to one or Uvo important prod- 
ucts from its recently published statement, quoted from and com- 
mented upon in the July number of the National Geographic 
Magazine, the corrections being rendered necessary by the issu- 
ance by the Director of the Mint of revised figures of the })ro- 
duction of the precious metals. The production of silver is now 
given as 55,727,000 ounces instead of 47,000,000 ounces, as in 
the former statement, a supposed decrease of about two and one- 
half million ounces giving place to an actual increase of over 
(3,200,000 ounces. The production of gold is given as $46,610,000 
instead of $47,000,000. The total production of minerals is 
valued at $622,230,723 instead of $611,795,290, as previously 
stated, the amount now found to have been produced during 
1895 being nearly one-fifth greater than that of the preceding 
year and exceeded in value only in 1891 and 1892. 


REPORTS OF SEALING SCHOONERS CRUISING IN 
THE NEIGHBORHOOD OF TUSCARORA DEEP IN 
MAY AND JUNE, 1896 

.\ resident of Hakodate, whose business connections are largely 
with the sealing schooners that cross from British Columliia eacli 
spring to hunt along the Japanese coasts, has given me, inform- 
ally, several hitherto unpublished notes wdiich would definitely 
indicate a submarine volcanic explosion or eruption in Tusca- 
rora deep, and show' that unusual disturbances exi.sted there 


SEALING SCHOONEES IN TUSCARORA DEEP 


r,u 


just before the great wave of June 15, 1896, devastated the 
Japanese coast. 

Tliroughout the month of INFay the sealers found unusual and 
most baffling currents and cross-currents prevailing in their hunt- 
ing grounds, which are at that season one hundred to two hun- 
dred miles off the southeastern coast of the Kurile islands, that 
volcanic range of islands or half-submerged peaks whose name 
is literally “ The Smokers.” These hunting grounds lie directly 
over and in line with that great depression (4,655 fathoms) of the 
Pacific’s bed sounded by Admiral Belknap, of the U. S. S. Tamt- 
rora, in 1872. exceeded only by the recent soundings of H. B. I\I. S. 
Penguin of 5,155 fathoms in the southern Pacific. The seal-hunt- 
ers in their small boats were separated from the schooners more 
frequently and for longer periods than usual by these unexpected 
currents, and if the pelagic sealers were not the most practical 
and fearless men they might well have been superstitious. One 
schooner, with all its sails reefed and its small boats out, set 72 
miles to the southwest one calm, clear day. The following day 
it set 60 miles to the southeast, and the third day, still close- 
reefed, on a smooth sea it was borne 40 miles due north. 

Another schooner, sending out its small boats to a herd of seals 
feeding among some tide rips, saw the boats cross the tide rips 
and, with oars resting, drift away to the northeast, while the wait- 
ing schooner was rapidly carried to the southeast. The masters 
of such vessels were puzzled b}^ these currents, and dead reckon- 
ing was rarely verified by observations. 

The temperature of the water is carefully watched b}’’ pelagic 
sealers, as the variation of a few degrees either way will pre- 
clude any chance of seals being found in a neighborhood, tlu)se 
animals kee[)ing to one even-water climate in their migrations. 
Several schooners found the water of unusually high tempera- 
ture in places, and one ves.sel rei>orted taking temperatures from 
48° to 218° Fahrenlieit in the course of a few miles’ sailing, this 
during the second week of June, ddie frightened sealer- |)ut 
about quickly, when, as he descril^ed it, the water was literally 
boiling all around him. 

The schooner OirloUa Cox, winch reached Hakodate June 25, 
ten days after the gr(;at wave had struck the San-Rilai coast, 
reported that when 2-50 miles out and sailing along the line of 
the great trough of Tuscarora deej) it had sailed for two days 
through floating pumice. Other schooners report(;d traces of 
})uniice, and the gossi]) of the Victoria sealers, who visited 


312 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


Hakodate at the close of their hunting season, was all about the 
unusual currents, the tide ri])S running like a wall, and the 
unusually high temperature of the water at different places 
along the line of the great trough in which Admiral Belknap 
plumbed Tuscarora deep. 

As all these sealing schooners winter at Victoria, British Co- 
lumbia, it should he easy for those interested in volcanic phe- 
nomena and deep-sea geography to personally gather the state- 
ments and inspect the log hooks of the masters of these vessels. 
The exact position of the floating pumice encountered hy the 
Cnrlotta Cox would at least he an interesting item for future 
dee[)-sea surveyors to note. 

Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore. 

The foregoing important statement has been received from Miss Scidmore since her 
artlfle on pages 285-289 of this number was printed, as has also the information that 
the great wave was from three to twelve and in places as much as thirty feet in height 
when it broke upon the shores of the Hawaiian islands. The wave also reached the 
California coast, and was five feet in height at Santa Cruz. 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 

NORTH AMERICA 

C.\x.\D.\. Alining experts say that the Kootenai district of British Co- 
lumbia promises to be the greatest gold-{)rodncing region in the world. 
The population of Rossland, the principal mining camp of the district, 
has increased during the last year from 300 to 5,000. 

Newfoundland. The recent parliamentary elections in Canada and 
the change of administration they have involved are considered to have 
postponed the entrance of Newfoundland into the Dominion at least live 
years. 

SOUTH AMERICA 

X RGENTiNA. The total number of immigrants who arrived in Argentina 
in 1805 was 61,226, an increase of 6,506 on the preceding year. During 
the first six months of 1896 the number landed was 30,900, of whom 
21,329 were Italians, 6,088 Spaniards, 1,196 French, 407 Austrians, and 
434 Germans. 

EUROPE 

Cyprus. Severe shocks of earthquake were experienced at Larnaka 
and Limasol on June 29-30. 

Russia. Extraordinary activity now prevails in Russian railway enter- 
prises. A railway to the extreme north is expected to revive the ancient 
trade of Archangel and the White sea. 

United Kingdom. The receipts of the Manchester ship canal continue 
to show a large increase on those of last year. 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


olo 


A movement has been inaugurated for celebrating at Bristol, in June, 
1897, the 400th anniversarj’ of the discovery of North America by John 
and Sebastian Cabot, who sailed from Bristol. 

Franck. A monument to Lagree, the explorer, was unveiled at Grenoble 
on August 16. 

The population of France, according to the recent census, has been 
officially declared to be 38,228,969, an increase of only 133,819 in live 
years. The population is, in fact, practically stationary, there being but 
one birth in each year to 1,500 inhabitants. 

GER^rANv. In the hope of increasing the traffic through the Baltic 
canal, it has been decided to reduce the tolls, the change to come into 
effect September 1. 

Four first-class ironclads, with a draught of 24 feet 7 inches, and thirty- 
five other ships of war, all belonging to the German navy, recently passed 
safely through the Baltic canal. 

The foreign trade of the German empire is steadily increasing. The 
total imports during the half year ending June 30, 1896, were 16,175,232 
tons and the total exports 11,957,563 tons, as compared with 14,096,330 
tons and 10,930,648 tons, respectively, during the corresponding period 
of 1895. The values of both exports and imports likewise show a large 
increase. 

ASIA 

SiBKRiA. The Ku-ssian government has finalh^ decided to make Vladi- 
vostok a commercial port. 

Burma. The Burma State Railway system, with nearly 1,000 miles of 
line in operation, has been sold to a syndicate for £6,000,000. 

China. The four sections of the commercial mission sent to China last 
year by the Lyons Chamber of Commerce are expected to unite in Yun- 
nan in November. 

The coast at Hai-chau, in the northeast of the Chinese province of 
Kiang-su, was visited by an earthquake wave on July 26. Several vil- 
lages were destroyed, and it is estimated that 4,000 of the inhabitants 
perished. 

Turkestan. The Swedish traveler, M. Sven Iledin, reports the dis- 
covery of a whole grouj) of hitherto unknown lake.s, to the east of the 
Yarkand Tarim, at 40i° north latitude. Between the Khotan Daria and 
the Kiria Daria he discovered two ancient cities, and further north he 
met with large herds of wild camels. i\I. Iledin followed the Kiria Daria 
as far as the jJace where it loses itself in the sands. 

AFRICA 

The first rail of the Uganda railway has been laid at Kilindini with 
imposing ceremonies. 

Work wilt begin immediately upon the construction of the third section 
of the Beira railway, establishing communication between Fort Salisbury 
ami the east coiust. 

A journey in many resj>ects remarkable, but in none more than in its 
rapidity, has just been complete<l by M. Versepuy, Baron de Romans, 


314 


GEOGRAPHIC NOTES 


ami M. Sporck, who left Zanzibar on July 6, 1895, crossed the Nile on 
January 19 followiufr, and arrived on the west coast by the first week in 
August, having crossed the continent in the brief space of 13 months. 

Kongo F hee State. The Kongo State railway has now reached Tumba, 
187 kilometers from the starting point. 

Morocco. Neither roads, canals, navigable rivers, nor railways exist 
in jNlorocco, nor are they thought of. Foot couriers constitute the fastest 
medium of communication. 

Orange Free State. Dr Emil Holub, the well-known explorer, now 
of Vienna, has received advices of the discovery of gold fields in the 
( )range F ree State which it is anticipated will rival those of the Transvaal 
in productiveness. 

M ADAGASCAR. While there is no longer any open resistance to French 
rule, Madagascar is in a condition of anarchy from one end to the other, 
and only the towns occupied by troops are safe for Europeans. 

Zanzibar. In a recent report of the British consul at Zanzibar atten- 
tion is called to tbe decline in the imports from Great Britain. Un- 
bleached cotton cloth is imported mainly from the United States, being 
admittedly of better quality than Manchester productions of the same 
price. 

Transvaal. The first count of a census of population within a radius 
of three miles of Johanuesbiirg gives a total of 102,714, consisting of 51,225 
whites, 44,390 kallirs, and 7,093 half-breeds. Of the whites, 32,741 are 
males and 18,484 females. 

Egypt. An electric street railway has been opened in Cairo. 

The numl>er of pieces of mail matter dealt with by the Egyptian post- 
oliice in 1895 was 22.440,000, against 21,070,000 in 1894. 

The annual overtlow of the Nile is two weeks late and great anxiety is 
expressed with regard to the maize and rice crops. 

At Kosheh, where a contingent of the Anglo-Egyptian army is await- 
ing the advent of cooler weather before continuing its advance into the 
interior, the mercury recently stood at 130° in the shade. 

^Iauritius. In a recent lecture on “ Mauritius, Past and Present,” Sir • 
Hubert Jerningham, the governor of the island, stated that if English 
was the otficial and commercial language, French remained the language 
of the home, and if gratitude for the numerous benefits bestowed by 
England upon the community assured attachment to that country, the 
heart of the old colonists still beats in their descendants. 

AUSTRALASIA 

The annual financial statements of the different Australasian govern- 
ments nearly all show increa.sed revenues and substantial surpluses. 

New South Wai.ks. It is pi'oposed by the colonial government that a 
great Australasian exposition shall be held at Sydney in 1899, the ex- 
hibits to be afterward sent to Paris. 

Tasmania. The yield of gold during the June quarter amounted to 
17,000 ounces, being an increase of 10,000 ounces as compared with the 
corresponding period of last year. 


THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION AT BUFFALO 


315 


Western Australia. The colonial government is promoting legisla- 
tion authorizing a water supply for the gold fields, the extension of the 
raihvaj^ system, and the improvement of docks and harbors. The premier 
estimates a gold production of £7,000,000 per annum. 


THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION AT BUFFALO 

The forty-fifth meeting of the American Association for the Advance- 
ment of Science was held at Buffalo, August 22-29. The attendance was 
rather small, partly on account of limited local interest, only thirteen 
Buffalonians being registered; yet in the number of investigators and 
teachers of renown the meeting ranked well, and in general excellence 
of the papers and discussions it was above the average, so that, despite 
unfavorable business conditions and prospects, the meeting was successful. 

Most of the contributions of interest to geographers were presented in 
Section E. One of these was an elaborate paper on the “ Development 
of the Physiography of California,” by J. Perrin Smith, in which succes- 
sive stages in the growth of mountains and shajiing of valleys along the 
Pacific slope were described and illustrated by landscapes and restorations. 
Todd presented “ A Revision of the Moraines of Minnesota,” in which 
these significant topographic features w'ere interpreted ; and I. C. White 
described and discussed the “Origin of the High Terrace Deposits of 
Monongahela River.” Of value to geographers, too, were Hovey’s papers 
on “ The IMaking of Mammoth Cave ” and “ The Colossal Cavern.” Under 
the title “ Sheetflood Erosion,” McGee defined the sheetflood as the logical 
correlative of the .stream, jiroduced under conditions of volume, declivity, 
and load tending to spread the flood over a wide belt instead of iiermit- 
ting it to converge, and exiilained tbe anomalous geographic features of 
southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico — rugged mountains 
rising sharply from smoothly-planed and lightly-veneered baselevels — as 
the product of sheetflood erosion, incidentally ])ointing out that the 
rounded summits and divides, as well as certain broad and shallow stream- 
ways in humid regions, represent similar agency. Collier Cobb’s “ Origin 
of Topographic Features in North Carolina,” and Gulliver’s “Post-Cre- 
taceous Grade-Plains in Southern New England ’’ dealt witli the land-foiins 
of the Piedmont ju’ovince and its New England extension ; Taylor’s 
“Notes on the Glacial Succession in Eastern Michigan” was largely a 
study of land-forms, while Spencer’s j>aper on “ The .Sloi)es of the Drowned 
Antillean Valleys” was a discussion of submarine toj)Ogra|)liy. 

Two features of the meeting were of special interest : One of the ses- 
sions of Section E was devoted to discussion of Niagara falls, with special 
reference to the origin of river and cataract, and to tlie reading of tliis 
most accurate of the geologic chronometers thus far known. To this 
session Gilbert contributed tliree remarkably clear and conci.se papers 
base<l on the season’s operations; Holley, Taylor, and Upham also made 
communications on the subject, the first two resting on extendeil field 
studies. Then, after the adjournment Friday evening, a day was devoted 


31(3 


DEATH OF G. BROWN GOODE 


by the Association to an excursion to and abont the cataract ; and the 
tliree ensning days were spent bj^ a group of working geologists in detailed 
examination and snrvej's in the vicinity under Mr Gilbert’s guidance. 

The second special feature was a celebration of the sixtieth anniversary 
of Pi’ofessor James Hall’s service as State Geologist of New York. Vice- 
President Emerson opened the session devoted to the occasion with an 
ai)propriate address on the part of the Association ; Professor Le Conte 
followed, speaking on behalf of the Geological Society of America ; McGee 
presented a foi’inal address on “James Hall, Founder of American Strati- 
graphic Geology,” and Professor John M. Clarke read an appreciative 
memoir entitled “ Professor Hall and the Survey of the Fourth District.” 
Stevenson, Hovey, Fairchild, and others spoke informally on the more 
personal side of Hall’s connection with the State, while Hon. T. Guilford 
Smith littingly addressed the meeting on behalf of the State, and espe- 
cially of the Regents of the University of New York. The venerable 
geologist terminated a much-needed vacation and crossed the continent 
to attend the meeting arranged in his honor ; and two days later he was 
in the field, with hammer and collecting-bag, guiding explorations for 
rock gas and oil in western New York. 


DEATH OF G. BROWN GOODE 

On September 0, Dr George Brown Goode, Assistant Secretary of the 
Smithsonian Institution and Director of the United States National Mu- 
seum, an active member of the National Geographic Society, and author 
of an article in the August number of this IMagazine, died of bronchial 
pneumonia at Lanier Heights, Washington, D. C. Dr Goode was one of 
the foremost biologists of his generation, his work in ichthyology being 
specially important, and he was the leading museum maker of the coun- 
try, if not of the world. With the support of Baird at the outset and of 
Langley later, he was practically the creator of the National Museum. 
He contributed much, also, to the organization and success of the United 
States Fish Commission, of which he was for a time Superintendent. In 
addition to his strictly scientific and administrative work, he was a lead- 
ing member of several jiatriotic and historical societies and did more 
ju-obably tluin any other man of his generation toward elevating the 
aims of the.se societies and introducing scientific methods in their work. 
Altliough cpiiet and unobtrusive, he was possessed of exceeding energy 
and endurance, as his splendid accomplishments testify; at the same 
time his simplicity of manner and sweetness of disposition were such as 
to harmonize every circle into which he entered. As a leader and har- 
monizer he was perhaps the most influential man in the great scientific 
colony in the National Capital, and in every connection he served most 
successfully as a medium between specialists and the imblic. His un- 
timelj" death, in his forty -sixth year, is a serious blow to the Smithsonian 
Institution and a heavy loss to American science — indeed, in view of his 
many connections with i)ublic interests, it may well be regarded as a 
national calamity. \V’ J M. 


NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 





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LIST OF MONOGRAPHS COMPRISING VOLUME I : 


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Physiographic Regions of the United States - - - j 

Beaches and Tidal Marshes of the Atlantic Coast Prof. N. S. Shaler 

Present and Extinct Lakes of Nevada - - - - Prof. I. C. Russell 

Appalachian Mountains — Northern Section ... Bailey Willis 
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Niagara Falls and Its History - G. K. Gilbert 


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The National Geographic 


Magazine, 


NOW PUBLISHED MONTHLY, 


numbers among its contributors the following well-known writers on the different 

branches of geographic science : 


Mr. Cyrus C. Adams, New York. 

Dr. Cyrus Adler, Smithsonian Institution. 

Mr. Marcus Baker, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Capt. John R. Bartlett, U. S. N. 

Dr. Francis Brown, Union Theol. Seminary. 

Hon. Jefferson B. Browne, Collector of Cus- 
toms at Key West. 

Dr. E. L. Corthell, C. E., New York. 

Dr. Elliott Coues. 

Hon. William E. Curtis, ex-Director of the 
Bureau of the American Republics. 

Mr. Frank Hamilton Cushing, Bureau of 
American Ethnology. 

Dr. Charles W. Dabney, Jr., Assistant Secre- 
tary of Agriculture. 

Dr. Wni. H. Dali, Smithsonian Institution. 

Dr. George Davidson, President of the Geo- 
graphical Society of the Pacific. 

Mr. Arthur P. Davis, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Wm. M. Davis, Professor of Physical Geog- 
raphy in Harvard University. 

Dr. David T. Day, Chief of the Div. of Mining 
Statistics and Technology, U. S. Geol. Sur. 

Mr. J. S. Diller, U. S. Geological Survey. 

H>»n. John W. Foster, ex-Secretary of State. 

Mr. Henry Gannett, Chief Geographer, U. S. 
Geological Survey and nth Census. 

Mr. G. K. Gilbert, U. S. Geological Survey. 

Gen. A. W. Greely, U. S. A., Chief Signal 
Officer, War Department. 

Hon. Gardiner G. Hubbard, President of the 
National Geographic Society. 

Dr Mark W. Harrington. President of the Uni- 
versity of the State of Washington. 

Uieut. Everett Hayden, U. S. N., Secretary of 
the National Geographic Society. 

Mr. Robert T. Hill, U. S. Geological Survey. • 

Mr. Wm. H. Holmes. Dir. of the Dept, of An- 
thropology, Field Colum. Museum, Chicago. 

Dr. Emil Holub, Vienna, Austria. 

Dr. Sheldon Jackson, U. S. Commissioner of 
Education for Alaska. 


Mr. Willard D. Johnson, U. S. Geol. Survey. 

Mr. Mark B. Kerr, C. E. 

Mr. George Kennan. 

Prof. William Libbey, Jr., Princeton Coll., N. J. 

Prof. E. McClure, University of Oregon. ' 

Prof. W J McGee, Bureau of American Eth- 
nology. 

Mr. John E. McGrath, U. S. Coast Survey. 

Admiral R. W. Meade, U. S. N. 

Dr. T. C. Mendenhall, President of the Poly- 
technic Institute, Worcester, Mass. 

Dr. C. Hart Merriam, Ornithologist and Main- 
malogist, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Hon. John H. Mitchell, U. S. S. 

Prof. W. ly. Moore, Chief of Weather Bureau. 

Mr. Frederick H. Newell, Chief Hydrographer 
of the U. S. Geological Survey. 

Mr. Herbert G. Ogden, U. S. Coast Survey. 

lyieut. Robert E- Peary, U. S. N. 

Mrs. Robert E. Peary. 

Hon. Geo. C. Perkins, U. S. S. 

Mr. William H. Pickering, Professor of Astron- 
omy in Harvard University. 

Major John W. Powell, Director of the Bureau 
of American Ethnology. 

Prof. W. B. Powell, Superintendent of Schools, 
District of Columbia. 

Hon. John R. Procter, Pre.sident of the U. S. 
Civil Service Commission. 

Mr. Israel C. Russell, Professor of Geology in 
the Univensity of Michigan. 

Dr. N. S. Shaler, Professor of Geology in Har- 
vard University. 

Commander Charles D. Sigsbee, Hydrographer 
to the Bureau of Navigation, Navy liept. 

Mi.ss Eliza Ruhamah Sciilniore. 

Commander Z. L- Tanner, U. S. N. 

Mr. Frank Vincent, New York. 

Hon. Charles D. Walcott, Director of the U. S. 
Geological Survey. 

Mrs. P'annie B. Ward. 

Mr. Bailey Willis, U. S. Geological Survey. 


25 Cents per Number or $2.50 per Year. 


THE OCTOBER NUMBER 





1 




win contain an illustrated article on 

CALIFORNIA, 


Bv THE HON. GEORGE C. PERKINS, 
United States Senator ; 


ALSO 


■\ -'v: 


THE ECONOMIC ASPECTS 

OF SOIL EROSION, 



Bv DR N. S. SHALER, 

Professor of Geology in Harvard University and Dean of the 
Scientific School ; 


AND 

SOME RECENT NOTABLE 

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^oL VII 


OCTOBER, 1896 

The 


No. 10 



AN ILUtJStRATED 

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A. W. GRE 




Honojrary Editor : JOHN &TDE 

Hotnorary Associate Editors 

McGEE ELIZA ITOSAJilAH SCI^MO^iB 

I 

contents' 


CALirORNIA. SEN.^TOR OEO. C. parkins 317 

THE EC5>N0MIC ASPECTS SOIL EROSION. DR N. S. SHALER 328 
THE NANSEN Volar expedition. consul ERNEST A. MAJ^ 

With map. 

ICE-CLIFFS ON THE KOWAK RIVER. 

RECENT HYDROGRAPHIC WORK. 

MISCELLANEA 




LIEUT. J. C, CANTWELL 


339 

345 

347 

348 


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THE 



National Geograpliic Society 

ORGANIZED, JANUARY, 1888 


Pricsident 

GARDINER G. HUBBARD 


Vice-Presidents 

MARCUS BAKER A. W. GREELY 

WILLIAM II. DAI.L 0. HART MERRlAM 

G. K. (ilLBERT HERBERT G. OGDEN 


' Treasurer 


CHARLES .1. BELL 


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R EC( ) R D I N( i S KCR ET A R Y 

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M A NADERS 

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C. W. DARNEY, Jr. 

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JOHN HYDE 


Corresponding Secretary ] 

HENRY GANNETT ■ | 






THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 
Back Numbers wanted by the Society. 

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Of Vol. I, 1889, numbers 2 and 4; of Vol. II, 1890, num- " 
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THE 


National Geographic Magazine 

VoL. VII OCTOBER, 1896 No. 10 


CALIFORNIA 

By the Hon. George C. Perkixs, 

United States Senator 

The Californian is never at a loss for some good words for his 
state. If he is a pioneer he has wrought at the foundations and 
rejoices in the rise and progress of a commonwealth having now 
more than fourteen hundred thousand people. The Argonaut 
did not much concern himself wdth the geographical greatness 
of the future state. He did not even know that there would be 
a state. There was the great outlying territory of Alta Califor- 
nia, stretching along for more than nine degrees of latitude and 
broadening inland to the crests of the Sierra 250 miles or more, 
an area that today contains 156,000 square miles, or more than 
99,000,000 acres, constituting the second largest state in the 
Union. He knew little of the coastline, with its indentations a 
thousand miles in extent, as he sailed into that magnificent hay 
after his voyage around cape Horn, and he knew less if, after the 
long trail overland, he looked down from the top of the Sierra on 
the great valleys that lay between the mountains and the ocean. 

The Spanish dominion, which lasted for 53 years, did not con- 
cern him much, since it left few vestiges of civilization. Mex- 
ican rule in Alta California was little more than a continuation 
of that of the mother country. Tlie mi.ssions founded by the 
Catholic fatliers con.stituted a chain of settlements from the bay 
of San Diego to tlie northern limit of the bay of San Francisco, 
each one making a little garden si>ot in the uncultivated waste. 
They founded no towns and built no cities. Tliese missions 
in the height of tlieir prosperity contained 24,000 Indian neo- 
phytes, possessing several hundred thousand cattle, 135,000 


21 


318 


CALIFORNIA • 


sheep, and 16,000 horses, and harvesting annually about 75,000 
bushels of grain. Their decadence began when they were secu- 
larized by the act of the Mexican Congress, and that decline has 
not been arrested to this day. In the solitary places near where 
the fathers wrought there are now flourishing towns and cities, 
and the picturesque ruins of these old missions are among the 
treasures of the land. 

The new era in the history of California began on July 7, 1846, 
when the American flag was hoisted at Monterey by Commo- 
dore Sloat. The discovery of gold followed on January 19, 
1848, a month before the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was 
signed and five months before Americans had acquired their 
title to California. Henceforth there were to be a new people, 
new laws, and new institutions. A few months after the discov- 
ery of gold 20,000 ])ioneers started on the long overland journey 
from the banks of the Missouri to California. Five thousand fell 
by the way through disease and hardships or were slaughtered by 
Indians. Scarcely less than 20,000 went by water, either around 
cape Horn or by way of the isthmus of Panama. In a few 
months 100,000 Argonauts were in California. Twenty-five 
years after that date $1,000,000,000 of gold had been taken out 
of the mines of the state. A stream of gold was poured into the 
Federal Treasury during the civil war, and there was another 
blessed outflow into the treasury of the sanitary commission for 
the relief of friend and foe alike, of the Gray as well as of the Blue. 

For the first twenty years in the history of California the only 
mode of transportation after leaving the navigable rivers and 
the coast, aside from walking, was by stagecoach, wagon, pack- 
mules, and broncho horses. In Sacramento and Marysville, the 
two principal steamboat landings, it was a daily occurrence to 
have depart at break of da}’’ fifty or more stagecoaches and 
wagons loaded with passengers bound for the different mining 
towns and camps in the foothills and mountains. The I'eturn 
stages were so scheduled that they arrived back late in the after- 
noon or evening, and, with fresh exchange of horses, would be 
ready to leave again the following morning. 

The earl}’’ stage-driver in California was perhaps the most 
unique and was certainly one of the most important j^ersonages 
in the community. His social standing and influence were rated 
in about the following ratio: For a two-horse stage-driver to 
those of the sheriff ; a four-horse stage-driver to a member of the 
legislature; a six-horse stage-driver to a mayor or governor 


CALIFORNIA 


319 


while the driver of an eight-horse stagecoach upon a popular 
route through several flourishing mining camps Avould not have 
surrendered his place, Avith its influence and dignity, for a seat 
in either house of Congress. The teamster also Avas a very im- 
jAortant personage, and the driver of an eight- or ten-bell mule 
team, Avith a single line, considered his position and importance 
quite equal to those of the superintendent of a railroad. I sjjeak 
advisedly, for I have been honored Avith the experience. 

Many of the richest mining camps could be reached only by 
long and circuitous routes, folloAving up the forks and branches 
of rivers and creeks or over pathless hills and mountains. There 
being no roads or trails, the only manner in which su]Aplies of 
provisions, clothing, and tools could be sent into the camp Avas 
upon pack-mules. These animals Avere loaded down Avith from 
250 to 400 pounds of freight, which they carried upon their backs 
Avith apparent ease,craAvling around steep points,OA^er sliding earth 
and rock, Avhere it seemed almost imjjossible for a man to walk. 
The pack-trains numbered from 50 to 100 mules in a train, each 
one in a single file, folloAvingthe “ bell leader,” Avhich Avas usually 
a broken-doAvn, Avhite horse that carried no load, and Avas di- 
rected by the OAvner of the pack-train, Avho also had a half-dozen